Madhya Pradesh: 12 years on, farmers still wait for completion of Indira Sagar canal

THIKRI: Thousands of farmers from Thikri and Rajpur tehsil in Barwani district of Madhya Pradesh are deprived of getting water for irrigation purposes courtesy the incomplete third phase of Indira Sagar canal passing through the area.

In the third phase, it is proposed to irrigate 20,700 hectares of agricultural land between 155 to 206 kilometres. But the work got completely stalled since December 2019. With only five to 10 per cent of the work remaining, thousands of farmers here in the area waiting to get this work complete early.

Farmers claimed that over 3,000 hectares of land are not getting water for irrigation. Though the authority had to spend crores on the project, the farmers are not getting the benefit of this.

Even the officials of Narmada Development Board admitted that the work got stalled after the company did not get a time extension and had no liquidity. They expected work to be restarted by January 2021 after Narmada Control Board (NCB) meeting.

The project was started in 2008, but even after 12 years, the project was still not finished. Sources claimed that the project deadline was 2012, but in December 2019 it got stalled with only five to 10 per cent of work still pending.

The canal was supposed to complete with an investment of Rs 478 crore, but Narmada Control Board did not hold regular meetings to monitor the work and government too did not pay much attention, farmers claimed.

Of the 91 villages of Thikri and Rajpur tehsil of Barwani district, thousands of farmers were expected to get benefitted from the project. As per the information from the department, water will flow to Golaniya ternal till February 2021, and later the flow will be stopped so that the remaining work would be completed.

District president of Bharatiya Kisan Sangh, Mansaram Panchole said that the work of Indira Sagar project should be completed so that thousands of farmers could benefit and don’t face any problems in the coming time.

When contacted Narmada Development Board No 9 superintendent engineer SS Raut said that work got stalled after the company did not get a time extension. The work is expected to start from January 2021 after the Narmada Control Board (NCB) meets.

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