Matir Srishti scheme: About 32K farmers benefitted so far

KOLKATA: The Matir Srishti scheme, announced by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in May 2020, has already benefitted nearly 32,000 farmers with 10,625 acres spread across 3210 sites brought under plantation in six districts of the state.

About 753 farmers' groups have already registered under the scheme with bank accounts being opened for 646 such groups. About 6696074 mandays created have been and the total expenditure has been to the tune of Rs 293.35 crore.

The scheme has been taken up in the six western districts—Bankura, West Midnapore, Jhargram, West Burdwan, Purulia and Birbhum. The Water Resources Investigation and Development (WRI&D) department has been selected as the nodal department with the District Magistrate acting as the nodal officer in their respective districts.

The scheme, involves various departments like Horticulture, Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and WRI&D department, converging with the aim to commercially exploit fallow land through horticulture, fisheries, and animal husbandry for additional income generation of the farmers and economic upliftment of the community through community participation along with environmental benefits mainly in the dry regions. West Midnapore has spearheaded the implementation of this scheme with 3074 acres coming under plantation at 86 sites. The number of farmers, who have been involved in the district, is 10281 with 56 farmers' group being registered.

Birbhum has brought 2254.26 acres at 1562 sites under plantation by involving 4003 farmers and registering 76 farmers' group.

In West Burdwan, 2112. 4 acres at 1153 sites have come under plantation with 3959 farmers and 50 farmers' group getting registered. Purulia has brought 1641.95 acres with 287 sites under plantation by involving 5480 farmers. Bankura has brought 1597.21 acres in 110 sites under plantation by involving 7627 farmers.

Jhargram has brought 17 sites spanned across 81.31 acres under plantation by involving 478 farmers. Fishery has been taken up at 483 sites in the six districts with the highest 218 being at West Burdwan. "Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has asked us to identify SHG groups that are badly in need of employment and engage them in this project. Inter-cropping has been done in as many as 646 sites and the total income by the SHGs through intercropping has crossed Rs 1 crore mark," a senior official of WRI&D department said.

He added that his department has taken up various schemes like water detention schemes, check dams, solar tubewell, depending upon the area and location of the land identified for ensuring water supply for agriculture.

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