Fire breaks out at SBI branch in Sambalpur University

A fire broke out at Jyoti Vihar branch of State Bank of India (SBI) located on the premises of Sambalpur University at Burla due to short circuit on Sunday.

There three computers, five air-conditioners, fans, cash counter and furniture of the banks have been destroyed. However, cash and jewellery stored in the bank are safe. Reports said people, who were near the branch, first noticed smoke emitting from the branch in the afternoon and they informed the police. Subsequently, fire brigade was informed and two fire tenders rushed to the spot to put out the fire.

It took around one hour to bring the fire under control. However, property worth lakhs of rupees was destroyed. Branch Manager Uma Charan Behera said business of the branch will not be hampered and the bank will function as usual on Monday.

67 model villages to be developed in Sambalpur

THE district administration has decided to develop 67 model villages under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) in nine blocks.

Informing this, Coordinator of MGNREGS, Sambalpur, Sobhit Kumar Bishi said 67 junior engineers working in nine blocks of the district have been entrusted with the task to identify revenue villages in their jurisdiction. Each junior engineer will select one village and personally monitor the development works to be undertaken under MGNREGS in the village, he added.

Work under various categories, including institutional plantation, land development, agriculture, livestock, renovation of traditional water bodies, rural sanitation and watershed will be taken up in the model villages during the ensuing monsoon season.

While kitchen gardening, green fencing and fruit-bearing tree plantation will be undertaken under institutional plantation, development of wasteland and land levelling will be done under the land development category. Besides, feeder channel, compost pit, dug well, vermi-compost, nadep compost, goat shelter, cattle shelter and azolla pit will be developed under agriculture and livestock related work.
This apart, stone packing and turfing on embankments will be undertaken under renovation of water bodies category while soak-cum-recharge pit will be constructed under rural sanitation head.
Moreover, boundary trenches in villages affected by elephant menace, pebble bunding, staggered trenches and stone bunding will be taken up under watershed category.

Bishi said the objective of the programme is to provide work to the rural dwellers during monsoon and at the same time  develop livelihood projects to help the villagers supplement their income.

The junior engineers will submit the project proposal for the model village on June 5 and work on the proposed projects will begin from June 8.

So far, the junior engineers have been involved in technical matters only. However, they have now been assigned with the responsibility to develop project proposals for the model village in consultation with the villagers, Bishi added.

BJP seeks details on fate of medical college in Kalahandi

With no progress of the proposed medical college at Bhangabari near Bhawanipatna, the district headquarters town of Kalahandi District, the BJP on Thursday sought to know the fate of the institute from the State government.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik laid the foundation stone of the medical college at a grand ceremony in November, 2016. He had promised that construction work of the institute will be completed by 2018 and admission of the first batch for undergraduate medical courses will start from 2019-20 academic session.

The medical college was scheduled to be established with financial support from Vedanta Foundation. The company had projected an estimated investment of Rs 100 crore to provide infrastructural support for the project.

“The State government has provided 40 acres of land on the outskirts of the district headquarters town for the medical college. Only a small portion of the boundary wall has been constructed during the last six months,” said senior BJP leader and former minister Pradip Nayak.

“I don’t think the CM is serious about the medical college in Kalahandi district as there is no budgetary provision for the project. It was a political stunt of the BJD before the panchayat elections,” Nayak said.
Besides, the State government is not making any serious efforts to restart the medical college at Jaring set up by Selvam Educational and Charitable Trust of Tamil Nadu.

The fate of the college built on a public-private partnership (PPP) model has remained uncertain after withdrawal of letter of permission by Medical Council of India (MCI). Though the State government has scrapped its MoU with Selvam Trust, there is no visible efforts to rope in fresh investors for revival of the institute, said BJP spokesperson Sajjan Sharma.

Nayak said a delegation of the State BJP will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi and request him for a medical college in the tribal dominated district with Central assistance.

Maoist camp busted, explosives seized in Bargarh

The District Voluntary Force and CRPF jawans on Friday busted a Maoist camp at Gandhamardan hill range near Maryadapali under Paikmal police limits in Bargarh district.

Suspecting over strong presence of Maoists in the hill range, the jawans conducted frequent combing operations.

Informing this to mediapersons, Padampur SDPO Laxminarayan Panda said no one was present in the camp and there was no exchange of fire. He said the security forces have seized one tiffin bomb, one hand grenade, 8 kg of gun powder, 10 metres of safety fuse, and 200 metres of electric wire besides other materials.

Security forces have also recovered one inverter, a bow and 12 arrow heads indicating the change of strategy of the Maoists and their shifting to traditional weapons.

Although the security forces have been combing the hill range regularly forcing the Maoists to be on the run, the seizure has exposed the fact that the Maoists are trying to reestablish their base in the hill range, which is close to Chhattisgarh and also provides passage to Kalahandi, Balangir and Nuapada

IIM-Sambalpur holds first convocation

Indian Institute of Management, Sambalpur on Thursday conducted its first convocation. SBI Chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya told students do ordinary things in an extraordinary way. Bhattacharya is also the Chairperson of the Board of Governors of IIM-Sambalpur. Addressing the convocation, she said reputation of an institution is shaped by the manner in which its students behave and conduct themselves. “It is the students who have the power to make or break the reputation of a new institution,” she said.

Bhattacharya, who is also the Chairperson of the Board of Governors of IIM-Sambalpur, said the students.

The chief guest, Odisha Chief Secretary, A P Padhi, said the state has emerged as a major educational hub of eastern India with several institutions imparting courses in humanities, science, commerce, engineering, medicine and management.

Odisha is home to a host of reputed educational institutions like AIIMS, IIT, NISER & IISER, IIM, Sambalpur is a new addition in the educational firmament of the state, he said.

Setting up of an IIM at Sambalpur has triggered new hopes and aspirations, especially, among the youth of Odisha. After globalisation, pursuing a career in management has become a major option before most of the students, he said. Describing India as the most happening destination in the world, Padhi said, India has vast potential for application of managerial skills for development.

Demonetisation has marked a new beginning for the economy, the chief secretary said describing the linking of banking and mobile infrastructure to AADHAR as the new digital economy, which has vast opportunities.

Newly appointed director of IIM-S, Mahadeo Jaiswal and Director of IIM-Indore, which is the mentor institute of IIM-S, Prof R T Krishnan also spoke on the occasion. While 45 students received certificates on the occasion, one student was presented gold medal during the convocation.