Hyacinth Choked Channels Caused Sambalpur Inundation

Harmless looking water hyacinths, which cover almost all water bodies and Dhobijoar Nullah, are largely to blame for the unprecedented waterlogging in Sambalpur Town recently.

As incessant rain lashed Western Odisha for days together, the hyacinths prevented the free flow of water in drains and nullahs leading to inundation of the entire town. The wild vegetation cover in Dhobijoar Nullah blocked the free passage of rain water leading to waterlogging. The hyacinths got stuck in the discharge gates and the district administration had to put in a lot of efforts to clean up the mess to ensure free flow of water down the Nullah.

Moreover, hyacinths provide the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes while its large leaves cause water stagnation. Many feel that if the hyacinths are removed from the water bodies, half of the waterlogging woes of the town would be solved.

Under the circumstances, both the district administration and civic body need to do some serious thinking on getting rid of the menace soon.

The growth of water hyacinths can be controlled both physically and biologically. Physically, it can be controlled by use of machines such as bucket cranes, draglines and aquatic weed harvester. The growth can also be biologically contained by releasing a species of weevil (beetle), which feed on hyacinths.

As vegetative reproduction of the hyacinths takes place at a rapid rate, Odisha Hydro Power Corporation (OHPC) had to clear the unwanted vegetation in power channel pond near VSS University of Technology at Burla upto Chiplima Power House II. Sources said the cleaning work was outsourced to Kalinga Engineers, which in collaboration with IDCO, removed hyacinths from the pond. Special boats with hydraulic system to lift and dispose the hyacinths were procured and the entire pond was removed of the wild vegetation.

While the district administration is scratching its head to find ways to prevent recurrence of a deluge of such a magnitude, the presence of hyacinths and their role in waterlogging has escaped its notice. It is high time the administration and civic authorities weed out the unwanted vegetation from water bodies in the town and in the process get rid of waterlogging once and for all.

Requirement for Lady Matron posts in ST & SC Girl Hostel

Engagement of Lady Matron in the Girls Hostels of ST & SC, Development Department DWO Bargarh.   Application in prescribed proforma from intending married women 45 years or above of Bargarh District are invited to fill up 55 nos of Lady Matron posts purely on contractual basis with monthly consolidated remuneration of Rs.7500/ per month for engagement in ST / SC Girls hostel under ST & SC Development Department Bargarh.

The last date of submission of application to District Welfare Office, Bargarh by speed post / Regd. post only is 16/08/2014 till 5.00PM.

To find out the selection criteria and more about the post, please follow the below link

Engagement of Lady Matron in the Girls Hostels of ST & SC Development Department DWO Bargarh

You can download the PDF file from District Official site www.bargarh.nic.in

Record 380 mm rainfall creates havoc in Sambalpur

Torrential rain measuring a whopping 380 mm literally drowned the western Odisha city of Sambalpur on Sunday , rendering 4000 people homeless and affecting 25,000 others.

The phenomenal downpour that appeared to be a cloudburst of sorts, resulted in the submergence of all roads in the city, which was virtually floating on a vast sheet of water.

The rain water gushed in from all directions and flooded almost every residential area and entered the houses causing great hardship to the people.

The district Emergency Officer Nihar Ranjan Das said 4,000 people have been moved to shelter centres. He said although steps are being taken to drain out water from the water-logged areas, the task was proving to be a huge challenge.



‘Odishi Fresh’ vegetable outlets in Sambalpur soon

Sambalpur will get ‘Odishi Fresh’, vegetable outlets soon to be developed on Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode.

Sambalpur district collector, Balwant Singh today said that 12 vegetable outlets would be opened. “The horticulture department will implement the proposal,” said Singh. “The 12 vegetable outlets will be opened in Sambalpur, Burla and Hirakud. The outlets will be opened under the ‘Vegetable Initiative for Urban Cluster Scheme’ of the ‘Rastriya Krishi Vikash Yojan’.

It is a project of the Government of India, said deputy director of horticulture department, Sudarsan Nanda. If materialised, the ‘Odishi Fresh’ will be like ‘Uddyan Fresh’ Nanda also informed that an aggregator has already been selected for this purpose. “The aggregator will be provided with land. And he will instal the pre-fabricated structures at the identified places,” said Nanda.

The vegetables will be collected from the village level cluster. One cluster will comprise of 8 to 10 villages. A non-governmental organisation, Citron consultancy private limited has been entrusted with the responsibility to form the cluster. It will also train farmers on vegetable farming, impart them with the knowledge of new production technology, and build their capacity.

The aggregator will collect the vegetables from the cluster. The aggregator will also store the vegetables in Sambalpur and sell them to the consumer through the outlets at strategiv locations.

“With the opening of these outlets, the consumers will avail fresh vegetables in hygienic places at reasonable prices. Moreover, it will also help in encouraging the vegetable cultivation in this area. The farmers will also find reasonable price for their labour,” Nanda added. He also informed that the project would be expanded to Jharsuguda in future.

Central Council Stops Admission to Sambalpur Homeopathy College

Bad days are ahead for the Medical College of Homeopathy and Research in Sambalpur. Even as the State is facing acute shortage of doctors, the Central Council of Homeopathy (CCH) has directed Odisha Government not to allow students to take admission into the Bachelor of Homeopathy Medicine and Surgery (BHMS) course of the college.

The college apparently failed to comply with the basic infrastructure and other criteria including faculty strength as per the guidelines of CCH. As per norms, each homeopathy college should have at least 43 teachers.

However, the guidelines were revised later by the Council which made a mandatory provision for appointment of 24 full-time teachers of which, 12 should be in the rank of either Reader or Professor.

But, the Medical College, established in 1978, neither has a Professor nor Reader. There are six regular lecturers besides as many contractual lecturers. The post of Principal has been lying vacant and is currently being held by a senior lecturer.

Apart from the staff strength, the Council in 2011 had asked the State Government to ensure basic infrastructure in the four homeopathy colleges including the one in Sambalpur in two years. As there was not much development in the last three years, the CCH directed the Government to stop admission to the college this year.

Though a new building was constructed for the college, it is located 10 KM from the hospital. Moreover, while the medical has ultrasound facility, it does not have a radiologist. As a result, the students are deprived of practical classes.

With the CCH decision not going down well with the locals, they have demanded the State Government to form a task force that would redress the problems faced by the college.

Principal of the college, Radharani Mishra, said while there is no problem in the basic infrastructure, there is a shortage of faculty. “Though we have apprised the State Government of the problems many a times in the past, no step has been taken yet,” she added.

Farmer commits suicide due to heavy loan burden

Unable to bear the loan burden, a farmer of Nuapali village under Bheden police station in Bargarh district has committed suicide. Police today said Bhagaban Pradhan (35)had consumed pesticides and died in Bargarh district headquarters hospital where he was rushed by his family members.

Heavy loan burden was stated to be the main reason behind the suicide, family sources claimed.

The farmer had availed loan from banks and cooperative societies. Last year he sold a portion of his land and repaid some amount of the loans.

He was under severe mental depression as he could not clear up the loan and decided to end his life by consuming pesticide,his elder brother Narayan Pradhan said.

The district administration is conducting an enquiry to ascertain the real reason behind the suicide of the farmer.

Fish Markets Set for A Major Facelift

In a bid to provide hygienic and organised market facility to fish traders, the district administration is all set to develop six state-of-art fish markets in Sambalpur, Burla and Hirakud. These markets would not only provide better trading facility but also remove the make-shift shops on drains and road-side presently used by the fish vendors.

Sambalpur Collector Balwant Singh said an expert team from National Fisheries Development Board (NFDB), Kerala recently visited Sambalpur town to undertake a survey for the proposed project. Each fish market will accommodate 20 to 30 vendors and fish will be made available to the customers in a hygienic atmosphere. Apart from these fish markets, a wholesale fish market is also being mooted at Durgapali here along NH 6, Singh said.

The Collector said while they are waiting for the Detailed Project Report (DPR), the markets will have facilities like refrigeration, weighing system, running water, drainage and effluent treatment plant. The vendors will be charged for availing the facilities. The maintenance work would be monitored by the Sambalpur Municipality which may outsource sanitation and related works, Singh added.

Tentative locations for four retail fish markets in the town have been identified in Gobindtola, Badbazaar, Bareipali and Budharaja. Similarly, two retail fish markets will be developed in Hirakud and Burla.

The NFDB will offer 90 per cent subsidy as a part of their activities aimed at promoting domestic market and popularising fish consumption. The Municipality will manage the balance 10 per cent and around `6 lakhs will be spent on each retail fish market. There is also a plan to develop an abattoir in the town to facilitate sale of mutton in hygienic condition, the Collector said.

At present, unorganised fish markets have mushroomed all over the town and fishes are sold in unhygienic surroundings. In most of the markets, the shops are located close to drains with  place emitting stinking smell. The only organised fish market is situated at Golebazaar. Since it is in dilapidated condition now, the vendors operate from outside the market.