Odisha to spend Rs 869 cr in mining affected villages

BHUBANESWAR: The Odisha government will spend Rs 869 crore for socio-economic development of the people in mineral bearing districts of the state.

A decision to this effect was taken at a review meeting of the Odisha Mineral Bearing Areas Development Corporation (OMBADC), a special purpose vehicle created to carry out development activities, presided over by chief secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi at the State Secretariat here on Saturday.

Out of total 869 crores with the corporation, project proposals worth 720 crores was approved in the meeting for housing, sanitation, pipe water supply and farm forestry.

A total 523 villages of 29 blocks in 8 districts like Angul, Dhenkanal, Jajpur, Jharsuguda, Keonjhar, Koraput Mayurbhanj and Sundargarh have been identified as mining affected villages.

The meeting decided to spend Rs 350 crore on converting the Kaccha houses to Pucca houses in these districts. In addition to this, Rs 350 crore has been earmarked for providing drinking water facility in the regions and Rs 20 crore will be spent on afforestation., said forest and environment secretary Suresh Mohapatra.

It was decided that the Panchayati Raj department would take up construction of around 46,000 pucca houses in 523 villages at a cost of Rs 350 crore. Of the 46,000 pucca houses to be constructed, around 20,000 are in Keonjhar district and 8,000 in Sundergarh.

“The chief minister has directed the concerned department to complete the construction of all pucca houses in the next six months, i.e., by August this year,” Mohapatra said.

General Manager (Operations) of the corporation Subash Chandra Swain said that about 50% of net present value (NPV) collected from the mining leases would be utilised through this corporation for basic developmental activities in the identified villages.

The board also resolved that the interest earned from the deposit of this corpus amount would be added to the corpus and would be utilised for the same purpose.