Pradhan seeks expedition of projects under PRASAD, Swadesh Darshan

Bhubaneswar: Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Thursday sought Centre’s intervention for speedy completion of several projects under flagship Pilgrimage Rejuvenation and Spiritual Augmentation Drive (PRASAD) and Swadesh Darshan Schemes to promote tourism in Odisha.

In a letter to Union Tourism Minister KJ Alphons, Pradhan cited tardy progress of a seven-component project proposed to be executed by ITDC in Puri.

Though Rs 50 crore was sanctioned under PRASAD scheme in March 2015, the progress has been slow primarily for want of Coastal Regulatory Zone (CRZ) clearances from Odisha government.

“I would humbly request you to personally review the status of the project, preferably on-site at Puri, at the earliest,” said Pradhan.

Under Swadesh Darshan scheme, a project worth Rs 76.49 crore for the development of Gopalpur-Barkul-Satpada-Tamapara coastal circuit by OTDC has been sanctioned in September 2016. However, work in ground slow largely due to delays in tendering of the work by the Odisha Tourism Development Corporation.

The Minister requested to expedite the projects.

Pradhan also requested the Union Minister to consider the proposals of Odisha government for inclusion of five additional projects under Swadesh Darshan scheme.