By Bizodisha Bureau, Bhubaneswar, November 27, 2017: Odisha on Monday launched a new scheme ‘Fish Pond Yojana’ to create additional 2,200 hectares of freshwater aquaculture farming with 50 per cent financial assistance to farmers.

“The state plan scheme has been introduced with a budget provision of Rs 96 crore,” chief minister Naveen Patnaik said at a workshop on ‘Doubling of Farmers Income Through Dairy and Allied Farming Practices’.

Claiming that Odisha is the only state in the country to have doubled farmers’ income in real terms over a decade, Patnaik said, “Various services in the fisheries sector are also being made online from today. I would expect an active participation of women SHGs and Fisheries Cooperatives in taking advantages of various schemes launched by my government,” Patnaik said.

“We are also dedicating Animal Ambulance Service in Berhampur and Cuttack urban areas with a budgetary provision of Rs 1 crore to provide emergency assistance to sick and injured animals,” he added.

He said the contribution from Fisheries and Livestock sectors was reported to have increased significantly – marking a 33.35 time increase during this period.

He added Livestock and Fisheries sectors play an important role in the development of rural economy in the state. These sectors have a tremendous relevance for the livelihood of small and marginal farmers who derive a substantial part of their income from the sale of milk, meat, egg and fish, Patnaik said.

“Due to persistent and novel initiatives taken by the state government, the annual fish production in the state has increased from 2.60 lakh tonnes to more than six lakh tonnes in the last 17 years. Similarly, per day milk production has seen a quantum jump from 24 lakh litres in 2000 to 54 lakh litres now,” he said.

The egg production has also seen a production growth of more than 2.5 times, he added.