The Bihar government is planning to give additional subsidy to farmers over what they are entitled to from the Central government. It is done to promote micro-irrigation methods like drip and sprinkler irrigation.
The central’s scheme Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana (micro irrigation) gives 55 per cent subsidy to marginal farmers (those having land holding of less than one hectare) and 45 per cent to those having land holdings over one hectare.
“The state government has decided to give 75 per cent subsidy all the farmers irrespective of their land holdings. The additional subsidy amount will be provided by the state,” an agriculture department official as per local news.
To ensure complete transparency in payment of the subsidy amount the department on Tuesday signed a memorandum of understanding with Axis Bank for direct benefit transfer.
According to the plan, farmers would have to register online through the official website of the agriculture department by providing the necessary details. Then, the farmers would apply online for the subsidy to set up micro-irrigation facilities. Their claim will be checked locally by the department and after processing at the district level, the subsidy will be forwarded to the state headquarters for subsidy payment.
“At each level of verification, a timeframe has been fixed for quick delivery of the subsidy,” the official said.
The farmers would have to spend 25 per cent of the project cost from their pockets. But a selected agency from the agriculture department will set up the facility in the fields and after completion; the subsidy amount will be transferred to the selected agency’s account.
“A software is being developed for this purpose and farmers’ registration process will start in two months,” said the official, adding that drip and sprinkler irrigation methods will not only help save 60 per cent of the water used now and reduce fertilizer consumption by about 25 per cent, but also enhance the productivity of crops by about 25 per cent.