With an apprehension of below normal monsoon, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asked for giving top priority to irrigation schemes.

Chairing a high level meeting to review infrastructure sectors on Saturday, he directed that the highest priority be accorded to the work envisaged under the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana. He said irrigation potential of all reservoir projects should be realized to the extent possible, an official statement said.

Beside rural infrastructure, the meeting focused on the specific sectors such as power, coal, renewable energy and petroleum and natural gas. The Prime Minister reviewed the status of stalled projects in the infrastructure sector. He was apprised of the steps being taken to enhance infrastructure creation in accordance with the Prime Minister's vision for the 75th year of India's independence.

He stressed on the need for Government departments to work towards initializing spending of the budget, in a focused manner right from the start of the financial year. He was given a detailed overview of the plans of various Ministries for completion of pending projects within the current financial year. He asked for specific data to be collected and presented on priority areas such as toilets, affordable housing and smart cities. He said that in the urban areas, one of the priorities should be in creation of waste to wealth, and efficient systems for waste water disposal and solid waste management in 500 cities.

In the power sector, the Prime Minister reiterated his emphasis on electrification of the unconnected villages at the earliest. He inquired about the progress on renewable energy goals, and directed maximum focus on this area. He said public spaces such as railway stations should be priority areas for adopting energy efficient technologies, and renewable energy.

The meeting was attended by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, Road Minister Nitin Gadkari, Communication Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, Power, Coal and New & Renewal Energy Minister Piyush Goyal, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, Rail Minister Suresh Prabhu and Aviation Minister Ashok Gajpati Raju besides senior officers from NITI Aayog, various infrastructure Ministries and PMO.

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