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Last updated: Aug 21 2018 05:52 IST RSS 2.0
 
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Why 4% agri growth is a challenge 20.8.2018 DNA: Top News
After two successive droughts in 2014 and 2015 and devastating floods in parts of India this year, the government has woken up to farm distress and recently announced some steps to alleviate the suffering of farmers, although pundits feel they are very little and too late. The government has promised to give top priority to agriculture and provide a higher minimum support price (MSP) to several crops. Besides, the government is also looking at forming a new agri export policy. However, farmers appear to be not satisfied with these announcements as farm distress has worsened during the last four-and-a-half years. Chief adviser to the consortium of Indian Farmers' Association P Chengal Reddy said the MSP announced by the government is too little and too late. The cost plus 50% recommended by the Swaminathan Committee should have been implemented in 2014. It has not happened even now. He, however, felt the recent heavy rains will not severely impact farm output this year but would help in overcoming ...
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Good news raining: Relief for Gujarat government as fresh water fills dams 19.8.2018 DNA: Recent Columns
The rains have saved the state from a much-anticipated dro-ught. The rains have filled many dams and reservoirs, including state's lifeline Narmada dam. The new water is sufficient for irrigation for a month.  Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and Deputy CM Nitin Patel, on Saturday, called a meeting to the review the situation. The CM also directed the officials to take necessary actions in the affected areas. He also asked to make water available in the Kutch region, where less rainfall has been recorded. The CM, while addressing the media after the meeting, said the inflow of water in the dams would dispel the drought situation in the state. More than 550 million cubic meters (MCM) water was stored in 203 reservoirs across the state, he added. "More than 278 MCM water has been added to Sardar Sarovar Dam in just two days. We have decided to fill Tapar dam in Kutch region immediately so that the water crisis in the parched area of the state can be solved. There are five districts in Gujarat including Kutch ...
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Friday's rain pours hope for Gujarat farmers 18.8.2018 DNA: Urban Tales
The rains on Friday poured a major relief for farmers, especially those sowing kharif across Gujarat. The rains that lashed the state after 21 days also brought fresh water into the dams at the catchment areas in Narmada and Tapi rivers. According to a recent weekly report of the state agriculture department, the state witnessed sowing of 72.28 lakh hectare, which is about 84% of the seasonal average of over 85 lakh hectare. However, it does not take care of sowing damaged to due flooding and shortage of water. Whatever was left was also at a risk of damage. Reports of damage to cotton in Saurashtra region and groundnut in north Gujarat have started pouring in due to inadequate rains. Nikul Patel of Dadhaliya – Umedpur village of Arvalli district said that the plants of groundnut are turning yellowish. Moreover, sowing was also infected by 'Dor' insects, which eats away the roots of the crop. Farmers are trying to save the crop by spraying more insecticides. "There was a fear that about 50% of the sowing ...
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Gujarat: Equipment quality, enrolling farmers risks for KUSUM scheme 14.8.2018 DNA: Mumbai
Quality of solar pumps and getting farmers on board are the two key risks for the success of the net-metered solar pumps, according to an analysis by Greenpeace India, Gujarat Energy Research and Management Institute (GERMI) and IWMI-Tata Water Policy Program. The analysis, which was released at a conference earlier this week, showed that India could surpass its solar power target of 100 GW by 2022 if solar pumps were to replace traditional water pumps in farms. It said that while the 60 GW target for large-scale solar power projects is on track, the 40 GW target for roof-top solar is still to gather momentum, and as of March, only 2.4 GW roof-top capacity had been installed. While talking about several benefits the solar pumps could provide, the analysis identified the quality of solar pumps and maintenance as a key potential risk for the success of net-metered solar pumps. Incidentally, the central government had recently launched KUSUM (Kisan Urja Suraksha evam Utthan Mahaabhiyan) scheme to promote ...
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Increasing farmers' income through reduction in cost of cultivation 13.8.2018 DNA: India
When the goal of increasing the income of farmers and workers has gained national priority across the spectrum of ideological boundaries, is not it strange that excessive focus is on increasing prices and not on decreasing cost? What is the political economy of this bias? Reducing cost requires triggering debate on sustainability, saving water, soil, seed and all inputs in such a manner that farmers improve his income by reducing the cost to oneself but also to mother nature. Reduction in cost takes place when we get more crop with less water as Harbhajan, suggested in early 2000. He suggested irrigation in alternate rows of cotton thus halving water requirement and also reducing the incidence of pest without any adverse effect on crop yield (more on it next week). Growing coriander around chickpea reduces pest attack in parts of Haryana due to predators attracted by nectar-rich coriander. Micro-toxins produced by using old bajra flour in early nineties in Gujarat were used as pesticides in Gujarat. One ...
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Bisalpur Dam records lowest water level in 6 yrs 11.8.2018 DNA: Urban Tales
Bisalpur dam in Deoli of Tonk district, which has become the lifeline of Rajasthan, has reached its minimum water level in the last ten years. The situation is that there has been a huge reduction in drinking water supply in hundreds of villages and several cities including Tonk, Ajmer, Jaipur. Within the last five months, 6 TMC water has been vapourized. Now, if there is no rain in the coming days, then the dam water will be able to serve the people of cities like Jaipur and Ajmer for only 3 months, till November. The total water level of the dam is 315.50 RL metres and 38.70 TMC water is filled in it. Now, the gauge of the dam is recorded as 309.19 RL metres. Only 8.61 TMC of water is remaining, which is 22.24% of the total water capacity. Assistant Engineer of Dam Project Manish Bansal said that till date, 4 TMC water has been given for irrigation and 10.35 TMC for drinking. On one hand, the water level of the dam is decreasing and on the other hand, the dam is constantly accumulating the waste, which ...
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Rajasthan: Jal Swavlamban revitalises water sources in Dausa 10.8.2018 DNA: Urban Tales
The Mukhyamantri Jal Swavlamban Yojana is proving to be a milestone in eliminating the water problem in the state to great extent. Under the scheme, water storage reservoirs of ancient times have been rejuvenated and are getting the rainwater. The water level in the wells has also gone up. Speaking on the Mukhyamantri Jal Swavlamban Yojana, Dausa Collector Naresh Sharma said that the scheme has been to solve the problem of water shortage in the state. Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje’s efforts have solved the drinking water problem and the villagers are also getting water for irrigation. Talking specifically about Dausa district, Sharma added that where the old water resources have been restored for the purpose of storing water , the work has also been done in the direction of developing some new water sources. Moreover, hurdles that stopped the water reaching these sources have also been removed for maximum storage. MLA Shankar Sharma said that when he became the MLA of Dausa, the situation of water in ...
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Low water storage in dams a concern, says Gujarat deputy CM Nitin Patel 6.8.2018 DNA: Recent Columns
Low water storage in dams in Gujarat has increased the worries of the state government, said Nitin Patel, deputy chief minister of Gujarat. The government is hoping for rainfall this week. Or else, the situation will only worsen further. However, the weather department has not predicted state-wide rainfall this week. “Rains were delayed in Gujarat. The first spell of rains in south Gujarat and Saurashtra was conducive for sowing. However, rains are still inadequate in north Gujarat and Kutch. Storage of water in dams is also not up to our expectations. If it does not rain now, then the situation will be tough,” said Nitin Patel. Currently, all the 204 dams in Gujarat have 3,37,352 million cubic feet (mcf) of water, which is just 37.88 per cent of total storage capacity of 8,90,650 mcf.  Patel also said that the state’s main dam, Sardar Sarovar Dam, has received lower inflow of water as rainfall in the catchment areas has been insufficient. He admitted that the government has been caught on the wrong foot ...
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Shekhawati to soon get Yamuna water 26.7.2018 DNA: Top News
There is a good news for the whole Shekhawati region including Jhunjhunu as the survey has started for bringing Yamuna’s water to the state. A 3-day air survey was carried out for the same in Jhunjhunu district. Due to the continuous efforts made by Jhunjhunu MP Santosh Ahlawat in the last four years, the project worth Rs 20,000 crore will come to life, which will provide irrigation and drinking water in the region consisting of Churu, Sikar and Jhunjhunu. Ahlawat was in constant contact with Union Minister for Water Nitin Gadkari and CM Vasundhara Raje for this.  Ahlawat met the Officers of the Water Resources Department and presented the progress report of the work done so far. It has been stated in the report that a 270 km long steel pipes will be installed for bringing Yamuna water to the Shekhawati region. To collect water, a 7 km long and wide pond will be built in Gothia Badi village of Rajgarh tehsil in Churu district. She said that the officials have assured that the DPR of this Rs 20,000 crore ...
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Continuous rain puts Pune's low lying areas on high alert as water released from Khadakwasla dam 16.7.2018 DNA: Wide Angle
Low-lying areas of Pune are on alert after the irrigation department released water into Mutha river at the rate of 18,491 cusecs even as the catchment areas of the dams providing water to Pune witnessed continuous rain on Monday. The riverside roads and low-lying Baba Bhide bridge have been already submerged due to the rains. The civic administration has now issued an alert to those living in these areas.   Pune city and adjoining areas have witnessed continuous rain since Saturday night, which resulted in increasing the water level in the four dams Khadakwasla, Panshet, Varasgaon and Temghar. In fact, on Monday, the Khadakwasla dam filled to its capacity and the irrigation department had to release the water at the rate of 3,500 cusecs in the morning. However, as the downpour continued throughout the day, the water release had to be increased at the rate of 18,000 cusecs in the evening. Speaking to DNA, irrigation department officials said, "On Monday, the total water storage in these four dams has ...
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Cloud Sourcing 13.7.2018 DNA: Bangalore
Cloud Sourcing
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Maharashtra government bats for solar projects on large dams 12.7.2018 DNA: Wide Angle
In a major push for the renewable energy sector and to overcome resistance to the acquisition of private land for infrastructure projects, the state government has set the ball rolling for floating solar power projects on large dams. This will see solar panels being installed on the Ujani dam, followed by sites like the Jaikwadi and Koyna reservoirs. A senior official from the Maharashtra energy department said the Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (MahaVitaran) had floated expressions of interest (EoI) for a 1,000 MW floating solar power project at Ujani dam. The project will be awarded through the tariff-based competitive bidding method, where the bidder quoting the lowest tariff is selected. "After Ujani, we are planning to take up work at the Koyna dam in Satara district and the Jaikwadi dam in Aurangabad," he added. At the Ujani dam, which is one of the largest in Maharashtra, and a crucial water supply and irrigation source for Solapur district, the project will cover 2,000 ...
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PM Narendra Modi assures action on Eastern Rajasthan Canal Project 8.7.2018 DNA: Money
In what can be termed as a major achievement for the state government, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has assured chief minister Vasundhara Raje that positive action will be taken with regard to the Eastern Rajasthan Canal Project. While addressing the public meeting in Jaipur, the Prime Minister informed that the detailed project report (DPR) has been received by the ministry of water resources on the project. He said that technical examination of this project is being done and soon decision on this will be taken. Chief minister Vasundhara Raje has been trying hard to get national project status for this scheme. During her address on Saturday, Raje had also mentioned about the benefits of the project and once again took up the project details. She requested the Prime Minister to give his blessings for this project. Earlier, a few days ago when chief minister had visited Delhi, she had met union water resources minister Nitin Gadkari regarding getting approval for this project. This project will provide ...
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Water for farmers near Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani's hometown, but not for others 3.7.2018 DNA: Wide Angle
The delayed onset of monsoon has made farmers in Gujarat anxious about the Kharif season and the government has not yet released water from dams for irrigation. However, Chief Minister Vijay Rupani has managed water for the farmers near his home town Rajkot. The water supply department has been releasing water for farmers from Aji-2 and Nyari-2 dams in Rajkot district for irrigation. Sources from the water supply department said: "Farmers from Rajkot district had finished sowing, and hence demand to release water was rising. If water had not been released for irrigation from both the dams, they would have faced huge financial losses. We have been releasing water for the last week and will keep some water reserved for drinking purposes, too." "This decision was taken since both the reservoirs had adequate quantity of water. We have been denying other farmers, although there is demand from other regions, too. But we are unable to entertain their demand due to water shortage. There was pressure from farmers ...
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Yogi Adityanath govt plans artificial rains in parched Bundelkhand 30.6.2018 DNA: Recent Columns
The Yogi Adityanath government has come up with an ambitious plan to bring showers in parched and drought-hit Bundelkhand region of Uttar Pradesh through cloud seeding. IIT Kanpur, roped in to find a solution to Bundelkhand's water and irrigation woes, gave a presentation in this regard on June 26. The Adityanath government had sanctioned funds to the IIT Kanpur November last year for making a project to create artificial rains through cloud seeding. The project was to clear air pollution from the state capital Lucknow. Chief Minister Adityanath, who has taken special interest in the development of Bundelkhand, had directed the Agriculture and Irrigation department officials to study if the same technology can be used for region, which is hit by drought almost every year for the past many years. The state government had also approached Pune-based Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM), which had provided similar expertise to the Maharashtra government to create artificial rains in state's ...
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Gujarat CM Vijay Rupani meets Israel PM, Gujarat gets 100 digital farming units 29.6.2018 DNA: Top News
Gujarat got 100 digital farming units as gift from Israel during a meeting between Netafim Chief Executive Officer Ran Maidan and Chief Minister Vijay Rupani on Thursday. The CM is on his maiden foreign trip since he took charge. The digital farming units have sensor technique which will help farmers utilise water and fertilizers better. The digital farming unit provides real-time data by monitoring the quality and nature of soil, weather condition, moisture in air, status of crop and other aspects related to crops. The technology is cloud-based so the data can be stored for many years and made accessible at different locations and time. "This technology will help increase agricultural production in Gujarat and this will prove to be a game-changer in the state," Rupani said. "This will also help in saving water and fertilisers, and farmers can get maximum return by minimising the use of resources." The CM also held discussions on sub-surface irrigation for sugarcane so that the same technique can be ...
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Delta ryots ditch kuruvai for early samba paddy, again 27.6.2018 Hindu: Rx
Pin their hopes on July 2 meeting
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Ahmedabad: Wastewater irrigation also leads to diarrhea! 27.6.2018 DNA: Recent Columns
A study has found that a large portion of Ahmedabad's farming population relies on water unsuitable for irrigation, which has had significant adverse health effects on them. The year long study covered 187 households from four communities that used surface water, groundwater and wastewater for irrigation. Apart from getting reports about the health of the households, the study also analysed the water samples for E.coli and found that in all the three water sources, the average E-coli numbers per 100 ml exceeded the international irrigation water standard. The study also found a positive correlation between irrigation water quality and incidence of diarrhea. The study found that the incidence of diarrhea in areas that used groundwater (7.92 episodes/1000 person-week) was lesser than those that used wastewater (13.1 episodes) and surface water (13.4 episode). Overall, the incidence of diarrhea in the study sample was 11.5 episodes/1,000 person-weeks. Based on the microbiological assessment, the average E. ...
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Coastal villagers fume over aquaculture 27.6.2018 Hindu: National
Increased salinity plagues 10 mandals, says official
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Govt bias in giving rehabilitation package: Pratap Singh Singhvi 26.6.2018 DNA: Recent Columns
The BJP MLA from Chabra, Pratap Singh Singhvi, has slammed his own government for discriminating against the farmers of his area with regard to releasing rehabilitation package for those farmers whose land has been affected due to Parwan Irrigation Project. The MLA handed over a memorandum to chief secretary DB Gupta and to water resource principal secretary Shikhar Agarwal and asked to immediately release due compensation to the farmers. In the memorandum submitted, it has been alleged that the department released Rs 4-6 lakh compensation per bigha land acquired from the farmers in the neighboring district of Jhalawar while farmers in Baran faced discrimination as they got just Rs 2-3 lakh compensation. Similarly, the department wrongly accessed the drowned areas of three villages in Baran due to which farmers received less compensation. “Three villages namely Bilendi, Kharan and Majra will be disconnected from every mode of transport under land acquired for the project. Though, the villages have been ...
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