Patnaik seeks higher central funding for farming

July 24th, 2010 - 9:50 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, July 24 (IANS) Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Saturday sought liberal funding from the central government for the development of the state’s agriculture and allied sectors.
In his deliberation during the 55th meeting of the National Development Council - the country’s top policy forum, he sought additional central funding to raise the state’s agricultural productivity and improve skill levels of the rural population.

The chief minister proposed broadening the scope of the centre’s Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme (AIBP) to include lift irrigation projects in areas where flow irrigation was not possible.

Patnaik also sought substantial augmentation of central funding under AIBP and for addressing water logging and drainage congestion problems and command area development.

AIBP was launched by the central government during 1996-1997 to give loan assistance to states to help them complete some of the incomplete major or medium irrigation projects and to create additional irrigation potential in the country.

“The state economy has grown at an average annual rate of 9.51 percent during the 10th plan and at 8.73 percent per annum in the first three years of the 11th Plan, at a faster rate than the national average, despite challenges posed by the global economic slowdown,” Patnaik said.

He also requested the central government to address other pressing issues in education, health, urban development, energy, coal and road infrastructure sectors.

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