Odisha to spend Rs.900 crore in mineral-bearing districts

Bhubaneswar, Jan 11 (IANS) The Odisha government will spend around Rs.900 crore in eight mineral-bearing districts by implementing a special purpose vehicle for different developmental and welfare programmes, an official said on Monday.

The amount would be spent for infrastructure development of 508 villages in 33 blocks and 64 gram panchayats in the mineral bearing districts which includes Keonjhar, Angul, Dhenkanal, Jajpur, Jharsuguda, Sundargarh, Mayurbhanj and Koraput, Forest and Environment Secretary Suresh Mohapatra said.

It was decided in a meeting held under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to discuss formation of SPV for development of the areas affected by mining activities.

The government has constituted a Mineral Bearing Development Corporation for the development of the areas. The corporation has Rs.850 crore meant for carrying out development programmes in the districts, said a Chief Minister’s Office release.

Besides, the government would create District Mineral Foundation that would receive fund at different times for livelihood support in the mineral bearing areas.

Mohapatra said it was also decided that 50 percent of the money, deposited in the additional CAMPA (Compensatory Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority) for diversion of forest, would be spent for the infrastructure development while priority would be given on conversion of kutcha houses into pucca houses, drinking water supply and sanitation in these villages.

He said the infrastructure development work would be implemented through Panchayatri Raj and Revenue and Disaster Managements in the eight mineral bearing districts.

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