One Time Assistance for Electrification of Agricultural Pumpsets in West Bengal

4 Dec

Subrata Biswas (IAS) — the Agriculture Secretary of West Bengal, does it again! Exactly a year ago, as the Water Resources Secretary, he changed a provision of the Groundwater Act of 2005 and made it easier for small and marginal farmers to apply for electricity connections. I have written about this in an earlier blog. On 30th of November, 2012, he has issued another Memorandum launching a scheme called  One Time Assistance for Electrification of Agricultural Pump-sets (OTA-EAP).   Under this scheme, farmers will be eligible for one time assistance of Rs. 8,000 for meeting costs associated with electricity connection. The state electricity utility had brought down the costs of electricity connection to Rs. 8,000 to 12,000 a while ago, so this amount should suffice.

So, as far as access to groundwater is concerned, Mamata di’s government has removed all the road blocks that our research had identified. It is now time to follow this carefully and see whether or not, these steps lead to agrarian turn around. The GoWB has also taken initiatives in the right direction for paddy procurement. If all these actually work on the ground, we may expect a period of high agricultural growth in Bengal in the next few years.

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2 Responses to “One Time Assistance for Electrification of Agricultural Pumpsets in West Bengal”

  1. waterlandecosystems December 5, 2012 at 2:58 pm #

    Hi Aditi, This is great! As Tushar said today in the meeting. Every action has a reaction and we cannot fully predict what policy recommendations will – often they have very surprising and unintended consequences. So it will also be interesting as to what new issues come up once the policies are implemented. I see policy development and engagement as an iterative process and there is not end point really. best, michael victor

    • aditimukherji December 6, 2012 at 3:21 pm #

      Yes, I am with you 100%. This is exactly the right time to go back and do research, no one seems to have money though 😦

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