Major & medium irrigation projects are capital-intensive in nature. The State Governments with limited resources find themselves unable to meet desired fund demands of all the projects. Therefore, the project completion gets delayed and a large number of projects in the country have spilled over from one plan to another. Further, funds spent on these projects are locked up and the country is not able to derive the desired benefits. This was a matter of grave concern for the Union Government. Against this background, the Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme (AIBP) was launched by Government of India during 1996-97 to provide financial assistance to State Governments for accelerating the pace of irrigation development in the country.
The objectives of AIBP are:
i. To accelerate implementation of large irrigation projects which are beyond the resource capability of the State Governments.
ii. Expeditious completion of the projects which were in advanced stage of completion.
iii. To realize bulk benefits from irrigation projects.
Eligibility Criteria for funding
This programme was originally designed for completion of ongoing major and medium irrigation projects costing more than 1000.00 crore where substantial progress has been made and projects where 75 % or more expenditure has been incurred that can be completed within four working seasons. Thereafter, the guidelines of the programme have been modified in different years to enhance its scope. AIBP in present form has stipulated the following conditions for inclusion under the programme.
1. Major & Medium Irrigation Projects accorded investment approval by the Planning Commission, which are in advanced stage of construction and can be completed in next four financial years and not receiving any other form of assistance. New projects could also be included under AIBP on completion of an ongoing project on one to one basis except for projects benefiting :
(i) Tribal areas / Drought-prone areas / Desert prone areas.
(ii) States with lower irrigation development as compared to national avarage.
(iii) Districts identified under PM’s package for agrarian distress districts
2. ERM projects having investment clearance from Planning Commission and commissioned at least 10 years earlier from the proposed year of inclusion in AIBP will qualify for inclusion. Inclusion may be permitted in the states / projects:
(i) Which have agreed to reform in water sector i.e. to implement Micro Irrigation in at least 10% command area.
(ii) Which have enacted Participatory Irrigation Management legislation and active working of Water User Association to maintain the system and collecting water cess.
(iii) Where new potential is also envisaged along with restoration of lost potential.
(iv) CAD works have been completed or taken up and likely to be completed.
3. Surface Minor Irrigation (MI) Schemes.
Surface minor irrigation (MI) schemes (both new as well as ongoing) of Special category states-North-Eastern states, Hilly states (Himachal Pradesh, Jamu and Kasmir and Uttarakhand) and drought prone undivided Koraput, Bolangir and Kalahandi (KBK) districts of Odisha which are approved by State TAC will be eligible for assistance under the programme provided that
(i) Individual Schemes have culturable Command Area (CCA) of 10 hectare and culster of MI schemes within radius of 5 Km having CCA of 20 hactare.
(ii) Proposed MI schemes have benefit cost ratio of more than 1 and
(iii) The development cost per hectare of CCA of individual scheme is less than 2.25 lakh.
For Non-special category states, the individual surface minor irrigation schemes having CCA of 20 hectare and cluster of MI schemes within radius of 5 km having total CCA of 50 hectare benefitting tribal areas, drought prone areas, desert prone areas and Left Wing Extremists Affected areas will be eligible for assistance under AIBP.
Funding Pattern & Mode of Disbursement
AIBP was started as Central Loan Assistance (CLA). Initially 50% of the project outlay was provided as CLA and the balance 50% was to be met by State i.e. on 1:1 basis. During 1999-2000, to minimize regional imbalance, States have been classified as General and Special Category States. The Special Category States were provided CLA on 3:1 (Centre : State) basis whereas non-Special Category States on 2:1 (Centre : State) basis. During 2002-03, to adopt economic reform measure under irrigation sector, special provision has been made in the guidelines by further relaxing the funding pattern. The States agreed to undertake economic reforms measure under irrigation have been extended funding in the ratio of 4:1 (Centre:State) for General Category and 1:0 (Centre: State) for Special Category. During 2004-05, it was decided that 30% of the CLA to non-Special Category States and 90% for Special Category States be converted into grant. During 2005-06, only grant assistance was provided and states were requested to raise the rest of the finances through market borrowing. During 2006-07, the disbursement pattern has been modified again and central assistance is provided in the form of central grant which is 90% of project cost in case of special category states, projects benefiting drought prone area, tribal area and flood prone area and 25% of the project cost in case of non-special category states. The balance cost of the project as the state’s share is to be arranged by state government from its own resources. As per recent guideline effective from October 2013, the cost at the time of inclusion of any new project in the scheme of AIBP will be frozen for the purpose of working out the qrantum of central assistance. The states being at liberty to fund the project from their own resources after stipulated date of completion. For ongoing projects not going as per schedule, time extension of maximum two years and escalation cost by maximum 20% would be allowed based on justification provided by the state with the approval of Secretary, MoWR. The cost escalation beyond 20% will be borne by respective State Government. The central assistance (CA) will be in the form of Central grant as given below.
(a) 25% of the cost for ongoing and new projects (Work Component) of non-special Category States.
(b) 75% of the cost of the project (Work Component) for ongoing projects in special areas (Tribal areas / flood prone areas/ DPAP areas)
(c) 90% of the cost of the project (Work component) for ongoing projects and the surface MI schemes benefitting special category states / KBK districts of Odisha.
During 2015-16, funding pattern has been revised once again by GOI. The projects of Odisha which are getting 90% and 75% central assistance will avail 60% central grant hence forth and remaining 40% will be borne by State Government.
The ongoing AIBP assisted major and medium irrigation projects were prioritized and only 99 projects were included 99 projects were included at national level under PMKSY. Out of ongoing AIBP assisted Major & Medium projects 08 Projects namely Upper Indravati Extension, Subarnerekha, Lower Indra, Integrated Anandpur Barrage, Kanupur, Telengiri, Ret & Rukura have been included under PMKSY. The physical and financial status of the projects are given below. The latest cost of these projects is ‘14596.51 crore. By end of March 2017, an amount of ‘9167.89 crore has been spent and additional irrigation potential of 83.765 thousand hectares have been created.