Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren, during the governing council meeting of NITI Aayog on Sunday, sought a special package from the Centre to deal with the drought-like situation in the state, a statement issued by his office here said.
Soren, at the meeting chaired by Prime minister Narendra Modi, pointed out that the state faces drought every three to four years due to lack of irrigation facilities, according to the CMO statement.
“This year, the state so far registered 50% deficit rainfall, with less than 20 per cent of the paddy sowing target achieved. Jharkhand is inching towards drought. I urge the Centre to approve a special package for Jharkhand in a bid to deal with the situation,” the statement said quoting the CM.
He also demanded a package for development of irrigation facilities in the state. “There is an acute shortage of irrigation facilities in the state. The existing facilities can cover only 20 per cent of the land. Five lakh hectares of kharif land comes under ‘upland’ category. If an irrigation facility is provided to such plots, crops can be diversified,” the CM said.
Seeking NITI Aayog’s intervention, he sought necessary instructions to facilitate approval of Kisan Credit Card by all banks.
“Of the 38 lakh farmers in Jharkhand, only 13 lakh farmers were able to procure KCC benefits till 2019. In past two years, five lakh new farmers were added to the list. However, more than 10 lakh applications are still pending in various banks,” Soren told the meeting.
He stated that Jharkhand Assembly recently approved the setting up of Pandit Raghunath Murmu Tribal University in a bid to open the doors of higher education for tribal students.
Also, a credit card scheme would soon be implemented in the state to provide loans to students at minimum rate of interest, the CMO release said, deriving from Soren’s speech.
The CM has sought more share from the mining revenue generated in Jharkhand. “Jharkhand was formed to protect water, forest and land. But companies that come for mining operations or to set up industries simply exploit the resources here. “No attempt has been made by any mining company to restore the land. There has never been a proper effort to solve the issue of displaced people. So, I feel Jharkhand should get maximum share of the income from mining operations,” he said, adding that the state was “yet to get its dues of Rs 1.36 lakh crore” from mining companies, which can utilised for welfare of people.