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CAG Tables Report on the Progress of Irrigation Projects in the Country in Parliament, Points Out Water Ministry's Delay

  • Delhi, July 21, 2018: Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) tabled a report on the national projects under the umbrella of the water resources ministry in parliament yesterday.

    The report highlighted that 16 major water resource development and irrigation projects taken up under the Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme (AIBP) 2008 are languishing due to various constraints and hurdles including land acquisition, inter-State coordination, financial constraints, and issues relating to rehabilitation and re-settlement of affected population.

    The report stated that only 5 of the said 16 projects are currently under implementation with estimated Irrigation Potential of 25.10 lakh. In these five projects, 14.53 lakh hectare irrigation potential has been created but a mere 5.36 lakh hectare (37 per cent) irrigation potential is being utilised.

    This is despite the incumbent government's much-wanted focus on improving irrigation facilities in the country, noted the report.

    The report also pointed out the cost-escalation that is happening in the implementation of these projects. It mentioned that initially estimated cost of the five projects was ?3,530 crore has escalated by 2,341 per cent to ?86,172 crore.

    According to the national auditor, the tardy implementation and cost escalation was on account of management failures and deficiencies in terms of non-adherence to the provisions relating to survey and investigations that are essential ingredients for preparation of detailed project reports.

    By Mansi Sharma