Diyawara Neyo Stage II, III in the works

The Rajanganaya reservoir. Picture by Nimal Wijeainghe, Anuradhapura Additional District Group Corr.

Referring to Diyawara Neyo and other development projects being implemented by the Irrigation Department, Irrigation, Water Resources and Disaster Management Minister Duminda Dissanayake told the Daily News that Diyawara Neyo’s second and the third stages would be implemented soon in the Padaviya and Inginimitiya schemes.

The project would cover 75 major irrigation schemes in the country.

Sediment disposal at the Rajanagaya tank and renovation of its distribution canal systems, farmer-training programmes, bank loan facilities, crop insurance and road repairs were executed with the assistance of Rajangane farmers, while the Irrigation Department provided the necessary funds and machinery.

The minister said that until the execution of Diyawara Neyo programme, no apprehensive or systematic work related to the Rajangane scheme had been implemented, leaving issues concerning water-management, cultivation, income-generation, and training unattended.

He added that nearly 25,000 farmer families lived in the Rajangane scheme, while 25 lands came under the left and south banks.

Speaking on irrigation promotion ventures, Minister Dissanayake said that World Bank loans had been planned to be used to prevent floods.

Studies regarding the construction of side walls, as well as other precautionary steps for flood-control at 11 rivers, had been completed. Such projects were being planned for the Gin, Mahaweli, Kelani, Kalu, and Nilwala rivers, as well as the Ma, Atthanagalu, Deduru, and Mundeni Aru oyas. The minister said that 40 major and 40 medium-scale tanks each, were to be renovated and a sum of Rs.500 million had been provided for the purpose.

He said that special attention was drawn to the eradication of invasive aquatic plants spreading in water sources, covering an area of 750,000 acres, adding that a species of insect would also be introduced to destroy such plants. 

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