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Yamuna basin states have agreed to convey their concurrence to the draft inter-state agreement for construction of Lakhwar, Renuka and Kishau dams on the river and its tributaries, the Water Resources ministry said today. The implementation of these projects will help augment the availability of water in the Yamuna and benefit basin states of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan and Delhi, the ministry said. The states agreed to convey their concurrence to the draft agreement at the seventh meeting of the Upper Yamuna Review Committee which was chaired by Union water resources minister Nitin Gadkari here, according to an official release. Minister of state for water resources Satya Pal Singh, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat and water resources ministers of Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi also took part in the meeting. Leaders and senior officers from the central government and the basin states also attended the meeting, it said. "Member states agreed to convey their concurrence to the draft inter-state agreement for construction of Lakhwar, Renuka and Kishau dams on river Yamuna and its tributaries... "The states have agreed to sign the project specific agreement for the construction of these projects so that proposal for approval of cabinet can be taken forward," the statement said. Since investment clearance for the Lakhwar project is already available, the cabinet approval can be processed on immediate basis, the statement issued by Union water resources ministry added. Gadkari also emphasised the need for greater co-operation among states to address the increasing challenges in the water sector. The issue of non-supply of authorised share of Yamuna water for Haryana and Rajasthan from the Okhla Barrage was also discussed in the meeting, the statement said. "The need for early completion of the work for installation of telemetry system at the release points for real time data of discharge was emphasised so that there can be greater transparency in the flow data at various control points," it said. The issue of return flow from Delhi and its quality was also deliberated along with the pollution in Wazirabad pond.
Gadkari called upon the governments of both Delhi as well as Haryana to take immediate and stringent action to control pollution, according to the statement. Gadkari also chaired a separate meeting of ministers and officials from 18 states which have been approved for National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) funding for long term irrigation fund (LTIF). "The minister expressed concern over low and slow utilisation of NABARD funds by states. He called upon them to work out ways to increase their utilisation so that the aim of Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme (AIBP) of bringing 76 lakh hectares of land under irrigation can be realised," the ministry said.
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