Tag Archives: odisha news

Balasore, Jeypore, Jharsuguda, Jajpur under Rajiv Awas Yojana

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik urges Union Ministerof Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation Kumari Selja to include Balasore, Jeypore, Jharsuguda, Jajpur under Rajiv Awas Yojana. Patnaik writes a letter to Selja over this issue.

Patanik said that, “The Government of Odisha is fully committed to making the State slum free and has formulated a comprehensive policy for this purpose. We are also in the process of making a legislation for according property rights to slum dwellers and preventing the growth of new slums.”

CM Patnaik further added that, “Six cities of Odisha are at present covered under the Rajiv Awas Yojana (RAY), which are Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Berhampur, Rourkela, Sambalpur and Puri. So far 2 pilot projects have been sanctioned, namely Rangamatia and Mahisakhal slums in Bhubaneswar and a few more are in the process of submission. Owing to the rapid economic growth and urbanization of the State, it is essential to expand the coverage under RAY by inclusion of new cities. Taking into account the growth of cities and the incidence of slums, it is recommended that the cities of Balasore, Jeypore, Jharsuguda and Jajpur (including Jajpur Road) may be included under the scheme.”

40 lakh, Agricultural Scam in Sambalpur

Police on Wednesday claimed to have blown the lid off a money-siphoning racket in the agriculture department with the arrest of eight persons. The accused included two government employees and two staff of private banks.

Sambalpur SP Nikhil Kanodia said around Rs 40 lakh was withdrawn from the department’s account in agriculture development branch of SBI in Sambalpur on different occasions. The transactions were conducted without the knowledge of the agriculture department’s deputy director, who is the authorized signatory of the account.

“Our investigation revealed that two staff of the agriculture department, Sanjib Dash and Prafulla Sahu, had withdrawn the money by forging the deputy director’s signatures. The duo had also deposited cash amounting of about Rs.13,27,160 on three occasions to avoid any suspicion by bank officials. An employee of ING Vaisya, Amit Chandak, and a staff of HDFC, Amit Sahu, helped the accused to transfer Rs 15 lakh to the local branches of the private banks,” the SP said. “The accused have confessed everything and we have recovered cash of about Rs 12 lakh and bank deposits from them. We have also seized a motorcycle purchased from the stolen money. A court has remanded the accused to judicial custody,” he added.

The four other accused were identified as Sanjib Dehury, Prafulla Dash, Sumit Arjual and Kumar Parmar.

Asha Bhosle will sing a Sambalpuri Geet

Well known playback singer Asha Bhosle will be heard singing a Sambalpuri geet in the upcoming Odia film ‘Chini’ with a western Odisha flavour.

Asha has sung ‘Uanshar andhare nai dishe sina, haji nai jai jan‘  penned by Durga Madhab Panda for the film. “It is for the first time that a singer of Asha’s stature has sung a Sambalpuri number for a movie,” said Pradip Bhol, who is debuting as a director with the film.

Bhol, who has earlier produced reasonably successful movies such as ‘Pabitra Bandhan’ and ‘Suna Sankhali’, said ‘Chini’ will be an out and out commercial flick depicting how superstitions exist among the educated. “Traditions and culture of western Odisha, Nuakhai festival and marriages in this part of the state will be depicted in the film,” he said after the mahurat at Samlai temple in Sambalpur on Monday evening.

“Dialogues of the movie are a good mix of Sambalpuri and Odia. People from other parts of the state who don’t speak the western Odisha dialect can also easily understand the film and identify themselves with it,” Bhol said.

Famous Odia actors Mihir Das, Maheswata Ray and Debu Bose make up the star cast of the two-and-a-half-hour movie. Newcomer Tithi Rupa will be seen in the lead role as ‘Chini’. “I am very excited and feel very lucky to have bagged the role. The script is very exciting. The youth in the state can easily correlate themselves with the movie,” she said. Snehlata Padira and Bhabani Majhi are jointly producing the film.

Odisha to invite bids for vegetable retail chains in three towns

The horticulture department of the Odisha government will soon come up with tenders for setting up of vegetable retail chains in towns like Sambalpur, Rourkela and Berhampur, after a similar initiative in Bhubaneswar.

The department has already facilitated setting up of two vegetable stores, branded as ‘Udyan Fresh’ in the capital city with the help of private players and aims to open at least 18 more. In the adjacent Cuttack city, it has plans to open five such stores.

“For Sambalpur, Rourkela and Berhampur towns, we have not decided how many stores will be there. We will notify it in our next expression of interest advertisements,” said K B Dash, an official dealing with the ‘Udyan Fresh’ scheme, in the Directorate of Horticulture, Government of Odisha.

 These stores are being set up as part of a scheme of the Central agricultural ministry, launched in 2011. Known as vegetable initiative for urban clusters (VIUC) plan under the Rastriya Krishi Vikash Yojna, it has little more than Rs 12 crore provision for Odisha in the current fiscal.

The scheme envisages development of vegetable clusters and opening up of retail stores for ensuring supply of good quality vegetables to a city or town in every state having a population of one million and above. In the case of states with smaller population, the state capital city or township having less than one million population are also covered.

As per 2011 census, no city in Odisha has a population over one million. However, the combined population of Bhubaneswar and Cuttack goes beyond two million, according to an estimate.

The expression of interest will be open for domestic and international investors too, informed the horticulture official.

“Companies like Reliance Fresh can apply for the stores like it has done in Andhra Pradesh. Foreign investors too can apply after the recent central government decision,” said Das, referring to the latest announcement by the Union government allowing foreign players to invest in retail sector.

Under the VIUC scheme, the promoters would be subsidised for setting up selling stores, buying refrigerated vehicles and establishing cold stores, apart from buying farmers’ produce. So far, the state horticulture department has identified three vegetable clusters within the 100 Km radius of Bhubaneswar.

7 Odia girls in gold medal winning football squad

Seven girls from Odisha, including three from Kendrapada district, were part of the gold medal winning Indian women squad at the recent South Asian Women Football Tournament in Sri Lanka.

Besides Sasmita Mallick (21), Alochana Senapati (21), Suprava Samal (21), all from Kendrapada’s Aul block, Sita Sharma (Rourkela), Lochana Munda (Sambalpur), Supriya Routray (Cuttack) and Pinky (Jharsuguda) were part of the Indian team that defeated Nepal in the final at Colombo on Sunday.

Sasmita Mallick scored five goals in the tournament whereas Alochana and Suprava scored one each. The India team defeated Bangladesh 3-0, Sri Lanka 5-0, Bhutan 11-0 and Afghanistan 11-0 before gaining entry into the finals.

Sasmita, Alochana and Suprava are simple village girls, who were propelled into international sport for their love of football and hard work in Aul. On Tuesday, many villagers thronged Alochana’s house after she returned home. Sasmita and Suprava went to Bihar as they work in the railways at Patna. Alochana received a rousing welcome. “No happiness is bigger than winning a medal for the country,” said Alochana.