Report No. 4 of 2010 - Performance Audit of Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme AIBP of Union Government, Ministry of Water Resources

Date on which Report Tabled:
Fri 07 May, 2010
Date of sending the report to Government:
Government Type:
Union Department
Sector Agriculture and Rural Development


Responding to a sudden decline during the VIII Plan in the rate of creation of additional Irrigation Potential (IP) and reduced allocation of funds by the States to the irrigation sector, Gol launched the Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme(AIBP) in 1996-97 for accelerating the implementation of large major and multi-purpose irrigation projects which were beyond the resource capability of the States, and to complete ongoing major and medium irrigation projects which were in an advanced stage of completion. This was later extended to cover surface water Minor Irrigation (Ml) projects in Special Category (SC) States1, and such projects satisfying specified criteria in other States.

From 1996-97 to 2007-08, 253 major, medium and ERM2 projects and 6855 Ml projects were approved under AIBP; the Ultimate Irrigation Potential (UIP) of these projects was 10.49 million ha, which represented about 8 per cent of the country's total UIP. During this period, Gol provided funding of Rs. 26,719 crore for such projects - Rs. 16,720 crore in the form of Centra I Loa n Assista nee (CLA) a nd Rs. 9,999 crore as grant.

Our earlier audit report on AIBP (No. 15 of 2004) revealed thatthe progress in completion of AIBP projects and creation of Irrigation Potential (IP) was very poor; many projects had not been taken up or were abandoned mid-way; and there were numerous instances of cost and time over-runs. Further, the programme had been repeatedly modified, resulting in dilution of the original focus; many projects had been injudiciously selected (despite elaborate guidelines), and there were several instances of diversion, parking and misuse of funds, as well as poor contract management.

We decided to conduct a follow-up audit to assess whether the performance of AIBP had improved, and also whether the key issues highlighted in our earlier report had been appropriately addressed. Our audit, which was for the period 2003-04 to 2007-08, covered 70 major and medium irrigation projects and 346 Ml projects in 26 States, and involved field audit of the records of the Ministry of Water Resources, the Central Water Commission, the Water Resources/Irrigation Departments and implementing agencies of theState Governments, and field inspectionsofthesampled projects.

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