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Rs. 2,500-cr. World Bank aid for agriculture project likely

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MODERN FARMING: Agriculture Minister Veerapandi S. Arumugam at an exhibition conducted by the Department of Agricultural Enginering in Salem on Thursday. Photo: P. Goutham
MODERN FARMING: Agriculture Minister Veerapandi S. Arumugam at an exhibition conducted by the Department of Agricultural Enginering in Salem on Thursday. Photo: P. Goutham

Staff Reporter

Minister seeks release of funds before Pongal

SALEM: World Bank is likely to sanction Rs. 2,500 crore for Irrigated Agriculture Modernisation and Water Resources Management Project in the State, Agriculture Minister Veerapandi S. Arumugam, has said.

Participation

Participating in a seminar on Farmers' Participation in Watershed Management organised by the Agriculture Engineering Department here on Thursday, the Minister said that he had met the World Bank officials recently and requested them to release funds for the project before Pongal. The project would help promote agriculture activities and improve irrigation structures.

Better prices

He called upon the farmers to suggest what the government should do to ensure better prices for their produce. He told them to make effective use of modern farming technologies. The government had undertaken steps to inform farmers about modern technologies.

Later he launched a website www.tnagmark.tn.nic for providing marketing information on various agriculture products. He released a souvenir and distributed welfare assistance to the beneficiaries. The Minister also inaugurated new buildings constructed for the Gengavalli Regulated Market.

Precision farming

Agriculture Production Commissioner and Secretary Surjit K. Chaudhary said that farmers should adopt precision farming, drip irrigation, post-harvest techniques and other methods to improve agriculture productivity.

Director of Agriculture Marketing P.M. Basheer Ahamed said that proposals were sent to the Central Government to the tune of Rs. 8.5 crore for developing infrastructure for marketing agriculture produce and to take up related works.

Following efforts taken by the State Government, the total volume of the vegetables and fruits handled by the 103 Uzhavar Santhais in the State had gone up to 1,000 tonnes per day, he added. Collector N. Mathivanan said that more than 500 lakes in the district had recorded 60 to 70 per cent storage during recent rain. Mayor J. Rekha Priyadarshini also spoke.

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