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30 long pending irrigation projects in Odisha yet to be completed

8/08/2022 at 4:44 PM

36 saline embankments

Bhubaneswar, Aug 8:  The ongoing Subarnarekha Irrigation Project (SIP) initiated in 1982 at an initial cost of Rs 211.68 crore, for flood control as well as large-scale irrigation, is now estimated to cost Rs 6,715.96 crore.

The SIP has the potential to irrigate 1,14,200 hectares in Mayurbhanj and Balasore district. After 40 years, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik launched the release of water from its canal system that will irrigate just around 15,000 hectares in Mayurbhanj district.

Similarly, the Rengali Right Bank Canal and Rengali Left Bank Canal projects are yet to be completed after 45 years.

Despite cost escalations, only one major project, the Upper Indravati Irrigation Project, has been completed in Kalahandi district. However, due to lack of maintenance over the years, water from the Indravati right canal does not reach its tail end.

Another much-delayed Lower Suktel irrigation project in Balangir district is crawling to be operational. The Odisha government has targeted to make it operational by January 2024 after over two decades. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had laid the foundation stone of the project in 2001.

Besides, around 30 long pending irrigation projects in the state including Deo and Mahanadi-Chitrotpala projects are lying in various stages.

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