Haryana farmers whose land has been acquired by the State Irrigation Department will be paid annuity by March 2010, according to Irrigation Minister Ajay Singh Yadav.

Presiding over a meeting of senior officials of the Irrigation Department, Capt. Yadav asked them to work hard for the development of the State.

He said the focus was on early functioning of the Hansi-Butana link canal, equitable distribution of water to all parts of Haryana, making all-out efforts for completion of the Sutlej-Yamuna link canal, early completion of the second phase of the Dadupur-Nalvi project, and immediate de-silting or internal clearance of canals and minors to ensure flow of water to the tail-end.

He said that the water courses would be repaired on a war footing and a detailed project report on the Mewat canal would be prepared at the earliest for work on it to start.

Rivers and canals would not be allowed to be polluted, he asserted while stating that drinking water would continue to be the government’s first priority and executive engineers would be personally responsible for this. Strict action would be taken in cases of water theft and the proposal to set up exclusive police stations for this purpose would be followed up.

New water bodies would be identified for development and assistance from the Centre would be sought in this regard, he added.

Work on Kaushalya dam would be speeded up and other projects like Dewanwala dam would be taken up. Damdama lake and Sultanpur lake would be filled up and developed, he said.