New Delhi: With lower than a 12 months left for each Odisha state meeting and Lok Sabha elections, state Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has modified and relaunched his flagship scheme — ‘Ama Gaon, Ama Bikash’ (our village, our improvement) — as ‘Ama Odisha, Nabin Odisha’ (our Odisha, new Odisha).
The Rs. 4,000 crore scheme, which goals to utilise panchayat-level funds for cover of locations of worship, improvement of rural infrastructure and preservation of native heritage, is being seen as a ballot gimmick by the Opposition, as even the earlier avatar of the scheme was launched in 2018, months earlier than the 2019 meeting and Lok Sabha elections.
‘Ama Gaon, Ama Bikash’ was reportedly one of many ballot planks the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) used in the course of the 2019 meeting election marketing campaign, to sail by means of 19 years of anti-incumbency. The federal government is alleged to have allotted Rs 1,250 crore to the scheme in 2018-19.
The brand new model has an extra concentrate on locations of worship.
“Creation of facilities for the aim of promotion, preservation and safety of Jagannath [a Hindu deity widely worshipped in Odisha] tradition, locations of worship and pilgrim facilities in locations of excessive congregation,” is likely one of the “fundamental aims” of the scheme, in accordance with tips issued by the Division of Panchayati Raj & Consuming Water. ThePrint has seen the rules.
Patnaik has undertaken renovation of numerous temples within the state, together with the well-known Jagannath Temple in Puri since 2019 when the Bharatiya Janata Get together (BJP) emerged because the ruling BJD’s principal challenger within the state, within the 2019 Lok Sabha and meeting elections.
Though the BJD confined the BJP to 23 seats within the 147-member meeting, the latter managed to win eight of 21 Lok Sabha seats within the state. The BJD gained 112 seats within the meeting to retain energy in Odisha and 12 in Lok Sabha that 12 months.
Underneath the brand new scheme, the funds can be spent on enchancment of major training infrastructure, digital & web entry, sports activities services, banking services and extra services for “Mission Shakti teams” at gram panchayat stage. Mission Shakti is a state sponsored programme for empowerment of girls in Odisha by means of Self Assist Group method.
It is a step forward of the older scheme which had been launched with the goal “to speed up native improvement by taking small and important tasks of native significance and offering lacking hyperlinks to present improvement infrastructure in addition to development, restore, modernization of enlargement works”. ThePrint has additionally seen the older tips.
Underneath the brand new plan, every gram panchayat can be entitled to a sum of as much as Rs 50 lakh for developmental tasks, every value no more than Rs 10 lakh. Of the 50 lakh, as much as Rs 10 lakh can be spent for the “promotion, preservation and safety” of Jagannath tradition and custom, locations of worship and pilgrim facilities in locations with excessive congregation, state the rules.
As within the earlier scheme, the suggestions for the tasks would come from native individuals, group organisations, public representatives and different stakeholders. For presidency approval, mission lists of every block can be consolidated and submitted to the federal government’s Panchayati Raj & Consuming Water division. Collectors of all districts have been requested to submit the proposal by 31 July this 12 months, ThePrint has learnt.
Speaking in regards to the scheme to ThePrint, state Panchayati Raj Minister Pradip Kumar Amat mentioned, “This scheme… will herald a brand new Odisha. It’ll usher in an Odisha with safe roots and highly effective wings”.
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‘New Odisha’ or ‘hoodwink’
Whereas BJD leaders have applauded the scheme because the “imaginative and prescient of a New Odisha”, the Opposition has attacked the ruling occasion for the relaunch.
Shortly after the state cupboard accredited the scheme final week, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik advised the media in Bhubaneswar, “I’m glad to temporary you all about our ‘Ama Odisha, Nabin Odisha’. This scheme has the imaginative and prescient of a brand new Odisha, aspirational Odisha, fashionable Odisha, whereas retaining the essence, the soul and the spirit of Odisha.”
Whereas saying that the scheme will assist panchayats to take up developmental work, he added, “We have to bridge the hole in training infrastructure, present banking services, construct digital infrastructure and take up different modernization works.”
Nevertheless, the Opposition has been sharp in its assault on the federal government. In a press convention a day later, state Congress president Sarat Pattanayak pointed on the older model of the scheme and mentioned, “The BJD authorities typically proclaims schemes earlier than elections and forgets them after voting is accomplished”. The opposition occasion additionally alleged that the availability of Rs 50 lakh per gram panchayat will go to the BJD.
In a separate convention, senior BJP chief Samir Mohanty taunted the chief minister for the identify of the scheme sounding like his personal identify and mentioned that the programme indicated that the ruling BJD was veering in the direction of “Naveen’s Odisha” from “Biju’s Odisha”.
He added, “It is a new sport of the federal government to hoodwink individuals.”
“We suspect the brand new scheme is a ploy to make funds accessible for BJD staff for the upcoming elections as tasks are being awarded (beneath the outdated scheme) with out floating tenders,” Mohanty additional alleged.
(Edited by Smriti Sinha)
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