Bhubaneswar: Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Thursday laid the foundation stone of Utkal Upvan, being developed by Mahanadi Coalfields Limited (MCL) as a site of tourist attraction in Jharsuguda district of Odisha.
The foundation stone of Utkal Upvan was laid remotely through videoconferencing (VC) from New Delhi by the Home Minister in the presence of Coal and Mines Minister Prahlad Joshi, and Coal secretary Anil Kumar Jain.
Besides Utkal Upvan, being developed with a vision to transform an excavated coal mine into eco-park, MCL celebrated Vanmohotsav-2020, conducting a special plantation drive at all its Project areas and offices spread over in Angul, Sambalpur, Jharsuguda and Sundergarh districts.
MCL CMD BN Shukla also participated over VC in the launch of Vriksharopan Abhiyan by the Home Minister and foundation stone laying ceremony along with KR Vasudevan, Director (Finance), Keshav Rao, Director (Personnel) and Baban Singh, Director (Technical/P&P).
The CMD and Directors planted saplings of fruit bearing trees at townships Jagruti Vihar and Anand Vihar in Sambalpur.
Similar functions were organised at 19 places across the projects and offices of the company in Odisha. Local elected representatives, trade union leaders and large number of employees participated observing social distancing norms.
More than 17,000 saplings were planted while over 37,000 saplings were distributed free-of-cost for plantation in and around coalfields areas during this special drive focused on plantation of fruit-bearing trees.
MCL has targeted plantation of 1.22 lakh trees in the financial year 2020-21.
The company has planted progressively around six million trees in state of Odisha over the years.
Mahanadi Coalfields Limited (MCL), a subsidiary of Coal India Limited, has taken an initiative to develop “Utkal Upvan” at the decoaled portion of Lilari open cast mine, located at a 30 minute drive from Veer Surendra Sai Airport, Jharsuguda.
This eco-Park will have cycling and walking tracks, children’s park, toy train, mine museum, adventure activities, like boating, skating, climbing, archery; botanical Garden, eatery junction, auditorium and luxury cottages.
This sustainable eco-park being developed near a nine-hole golf course and Koilighughar waterfall will also generate tourism-driven self-employment opportunities for locals.