The government is exploring the possibility of enlisting the help of World Bank to turn vast raviney terrain – Bihad, in the Gwalior-Chambal region in Madhya Pradesh, into productive agricultural land and a preliminary report on the project is expected within a month, an official statement said on Sunday.

According to the statement, a total of three lakh hectares of land in the rugged region is not currently cultivable and if this area is improved, that would help in overall improvement of the Bihad region in the belt, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said in a meeting through a video conference with World Bank officials on Saturday.

Apart from World Bank, officials from Ministry of Agriculture, Madhya Pradesh Department of Agriculture and agricultural scientists from Rajmata Vijayaraje Scindia Krishi Vishwa Vidyalaya, Gwalior participated in the meeting.

Tomar said the proposed plan would not only help improve agricultural development and the environment, but also create employment opportunities for the people, leading to substantive development of this region.

According to the Minister, a highway is planned through this Chambal region which will help in overall improvement of the region. An initial report on developing the Bihad region is expected within a month. Once it is ready, discussions will be held with Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister to decide on further course of action, Tomar said.

The representative of World Bank Adarsh Kumar, said the World Bank was keen to work in the State of Madhya Pradesh. Vivek Aggarwal, Joint Secretary in Agriculture Ministry, said all the aspects related to technology, infrastructure, capital cost, and investment will be taken into consideration before initiating work on the proposed project.

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