By Bizodisha Bureau, Bhubaneswar, October 27, 2017: Odisha government has taken up projects worth Rs 900 crore in the mining-affected areas of eight districts under Odisha Mineral Bearing Area Development Corporation [OMBDAC].

This was revealed at a high level meeting held here on Friday where chief secretary A.P. Padhi reviewed the progress of these projects. These projects relate to developmental activities undertaken by OMBADC, which was constituted with money contributed by mining lessees, in mining areas in eight districts.

“So far, the corporation has got funds of around Rs 1,000 crore. As of now, projects worth Rs 900 crore have been approved for carrying out developmental works in mineral- bearing areas,” said Padhi.

The projects such as concrete houses along with toilets, drinking water, road connectivity, sanitation and afforestation activities on saturation mode were prioritised in the meeting. Padhi also directed all departments to implement the schemes of their respective departments on saturation mode covering all eligible households.

The Chief Secretary directed for completion of dwelling units in a time-bound manner and asked officials to ensure houses for homeless families in mining-affected areas.

The panchayati raj department was directed to undertake a detailed survey of the homesteadless persons and prepare a project to build their houses through convergence with other programmes.

The state has identified 691 villages in the mineral-bearing districts of Angul, Dhenkanal, Jajpur, Jharsuguda, Kendujhar, Koraput, Mayurbhanj and Sundargarh to spend the allocated funds.

So far, 29,829 housing units and 217 drinking water projects have been sanctioned under the OMBADC.

Farm and social forestry on 1,938 hectares of land and avenue plantation along 535 km of roads were taken up during 2016-17. The projects for block plantation in 208 hectares, 98,000 saplings for plantation in the urban areas, avenue plantation along 307km of road were approved.
Development Commissioner R. Balakrishnan directed officials to focus on improving road connectivity to ensure basic services to mining-affected people.