The Central government has spent nearly Rs 200,000 crore from the First Five-Year Plan to create an irrigation potential of around 109 million hectare. But the efforts have lagged considerably, affecting the country’s ability to counter poor monsoons and improving agricultural productivity.

Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh (MP) are some of the biggest offenders in irrigation spending. For example, Andhra Pradesh has completed only 17 projects out of the allotted 105 projects. Karnataka has completed only 33 projects out of 305 projects while Maharashtra and MP have completed 94 and 90 out of 186 and 242 projects, respectively. Read more