Uttar Pradesh government gearing up to install 8,000 solar-powered borewells in coming days and 35 per cent of them would come up in the Purvanchal districts of the state.
The districts set to benefit from the initiative include Balrampur, Shravasti, Siddharthnagar and Kushinagar where suitable locations would be identified for installations, it said in an official statement.
The details emerged during Chief Secretary Rajendra Kumar Tiwari’s assessment of action plans prepared by various departments for the overall development of Purvanchal districts of the state.
According to the statement “Considering water scarcity in Purvanchal region and the success of drip irrigation, the government plans to install sprinklers under the ‘Per Drop More Crop’ programme of the Prime Minister Agricultural Irrigation Scheme.”
The state plans to install 8,000 solar-powered borewells, of which about 35 per cent would be installed in the Purvanchal districts, it said.
Tiwari also discussed ways to improve research in traditional methods of farming to benefit the region’s native Tharu tribe, which is more densely settled in the districts of Balrampur, Maharajganj, Shravasti, Bahraich and Sonbhadra.
The top official also suggested that marketing strategies can be designed for traditional farming, goat farming, poultry farming, bee keeping, mushroom production, vegetable production to help the tribe, according to the statement.
The government is also actively promoting organic farming to reduce its fertiliser subsidy budget and a pilot project is envisaged on 100-200 acres in 15 identified districts in the Purvanchal region, it added.
The government’s thrust is also on promotion of contract farming to supplement farmers’ income, the statement said.
“Under contract farming, long-term contracts with multinational companies may be negotiated to encourage cultivation of potato, jackfruit, vine, guava, mango, banana, chilli-spices and other traditional products,” it added.
The government also emphasised promoting fisheries, poultry, horticulture, cucumber processing, mushroom, among others, to boost farmers’ additional income.