India, World Bank sign 420 million project agreement to benefit farmers in Maharashtra

Union Government, Maharashtra Government and the World Bank on April 6, 2018 signed a USD 420 million project agreement to help small and marginal farmers in the Marathwada and Vidarbha regions of Maharashtra.

The project will help in increasing the climate resilient practices in agriculture and ensuring that farming continues to remain a financially viable activity for them.

The USD 420 million loan from World Bank's International Bank for Reconstruction and Development (IBRD) will have a 6 year grace period and a maturity of 24 years.

Maharashtra Project for Climate Resilient Agriculture

• The project is expected to benefit over 7 million people that are spread over an area of 3.0 million ha and cover 5142 villages across 15 most climate vulnerable districts of Maharashtra.

• The Maharashtra Project for Climate Resilient Agriculture will be implemented in rural areas largely dependent upon rain fed agriculture.

• It will scale up climate-resilient technologies such as micro irrigation systems, expand surface water storage and facilitate aquifer recharge which will directly contribute to more efficient use of scarce water resources.

• It will help reduce risks of climate-related crop failure and help enhance farmer’s income by adopting climate-resilient seed varieties which are drought, heat resistant and salt tolerant.

• It will improve the capacity of farmer producers organizations to operate as sustainable, market-oriented enterprises.

• It will mainstream the climate resilient agriculture agenda in various local institutions that deliver agricultural services to the farming community.

• This project will help mitigate emission of Green House Gases through carbon sequestration which involves planting trees in upper catchment areas and afforestation.

• It will also support the state government to shift towards a new paradigm that puts climate resilience at the core of agricultural growth and rural development in Maharashtra.

[https://www.jagranjosh.com/current-affairs/india-world-bank-sign-420-million-project-agreement-to-benefit-farmers-in-maharashtra-1523071261-1 APR 7, 2018]