10 Drought affected States get the PM Pep-Talk on Drought Relief Measures using innovation & technology

Drought Dialogue - PM - CM AP

The drought affected states of Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Telangana, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Karnataka had subsequent meeting with the Prime Minister and the Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister to work out joint strategies to meet this natural calamity.

In a unique display of striking out a hands-on management approach at the topmost political level the Prime Minister had elaborate deliberations concerning famine, water – scarcity and agriculture and came up with the following key action points apart from the regular managerial exercise of identifying the problems faced currently, action taken and the proposed steps- short term on weekly basis, long term mitigation along with drought proofing measures specific to individual States. Each State was requested to prepare an Action Plan on a weekly basis to tide over challenges like shortage and scarcity of drinking water, conservation efforts and usage of existing water resource optimally and prudently. For its preparation and implementation, the States were requested to use innovation/ technologies to address the challenge of water conservation and water security.

  • Undertake a major drive for construction of farm ponds,
  • Adopt micro irrigation
  • Diversify into crops requiring less water.
  • Promote water storage and water conservation practices and rejuvenate water bodies.
  • While promoting dug wells and farm ponds, the State will incentivize solar pumps for irrigation.
  • Integrated action plan to be developed for water conservation, desiltation of irrigation tanks, rain water harvesting, ground water recharge, watershed development etc.
  • Maintenance of check dams, percolation tanks, lining of canals, prevention of water leakage and pilferage in distribution network to be given priority.
  • Prioritize water use; promote recycling waste water & use it for agriculture purpose in periurban areas.
  • To cover sugarcane under micro-irrigation in a phased manner Farmers to be incentivised for its substitution.
  • Special emphasis on reviving defunct traditional/historical step wells in different parts of the country.
  • All water bodies to be numbered by assigning a unique identity
  • Completion of the missing links of canals in command area by constructing underground pipelines to be encouraged. This will reduce evaporation losses besides dispensing with the requirement of land acquisition.
  • To tackle water scarcity, short term and long term measures, will be taken both by Centre and the State involving Local Self Government. It was decided that preparatory steps for water conservation would be completed before the onset of monsoon.
  • District wise Contingency Plans, information on weather, crop advisories will be made available to farmers on ‘mobile app’ in their language.
  • Remote Sensing, Satellite Technology will be used extensively for decentralised contour and ridge mapping and for locating ground water resource.
  • Analysis and use of Soil Health Card for mapping of regions and scientific advice for crops which best suit such regions.
  • Encourage the culture of seaweed, pearl and prawn culture in coastal areas.
  • Beekeeping to be encouraged along the milk route.
  • Rain water harvesting on building in urban areas to be made compulsory.
  • Apart from crop diversification, the States to consider value addition and promotion of alternate livelihood- dairy, poultry, fishery, bee-keeping, floriculture, timber farming etc.
  • On the issue of Pradhna Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY), the States were advised to make clusters of high risk and low risk Districts. While implementing PMFBY, it was also impressed upon the State Governments to make use of technology to validate the crop cutting experiment and eliminate the error between area sown and area insured under different crops.

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