Millennium Post

J&K: CCEA clears Rs 500-cr spl horticulture package

Keeping the promise that was made in 2015, Prime Minister Narendra Modi led Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA) on Thursday approved the Rs 500-crore special horticulture package to Jammu and Kashmir to help apple growers rejuvenate old orchards and start new ones.

This is part of the Rs 80,000-crore package announced for the state in November last year by Modi to develop infrastructure after the 2014 floods. “The state grows apples in a big way. The CCEA has approved the Rs 500-crore PM’s special horticulture package to promote new and old apple orchards,” said Jitendra Singh, who is parliamentarian from J&K and MoS in ministry of Prime Minister Office, during a press meet to brief about Cabinet decisions.

The Centre-state fund sharing norms have been relaxed to 90:10 ratio under the Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH) to implement the PM’s special horticulture package in the state, an official statement said.

“Out of Rs 500-crore package, the government of India’s share would be Rs 450 crore and the rest will be borne by the state government,” Singh said.

Commenting on the decision, Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh said, “The package shows that we committed are committed towards development of farmers. As apple farmers of J&K suffered a huge loss during 2014 devastation, the financial assistance will help them in reviving their orchards.”

The package will help in setting up of 329 hectares of new apple orchards and restoration of 3,900 hectares of damaged ones over three years. “It will benefit about 21,000 orchardists located in more than 491 villages where horticulture areas of more than 5,200 hectares were severely damaged by floods/landslides in September 2014,” the statement said.
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