By Bizodisha Bureau, Bhubaneswar, November 10, 2022: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Thursday said his government is aiming at making Odisha slum-free by the end of 2023. He launched a survey using drones to facilitate a process to provide land deeds to slum-dwellers in five municipal areas across the state.

The land survey was taken in Bhubaneswar, Cuttack, Berhampur, Rourkela and Sambalpur civic body areas under the state government’s ‘Jaga Mission’ programme. During an event here, Patnaik declared Hinjili and Digapahandi towns in Gajman district as “slum free” and dedicated 707 ‘Biju Adarsh Colonies’ in 33 urban areas.

“All the slums in the state will be converted into model colonies and Odisha will be made slum-free by December 2023,” he said. Patnaik also stated that land rights will be given to 2.5 lakh slum families of the state by the next year.

For the land survey using drones, the authorities of ‘Jaga Misson’ also signed an MoU with Tata Steel Foundation to identify slum dwellers and areas under the jurisdiction of the five municipal corporations. Tata Steel Foundation will provide technical support for the purpose, Patnaik said.

Expressing happiness over the slum-free status of Hinjili, the CM’s constituency, and Digapahandi, Patnaik said the slum-dwellers are being provided land rights for their houses in ‘Biju Adarsh Colonies’ which are being built across the state. The CM claimed that the Odisha’s ‘Jaga Mission’ programme has got global recognition and applause from the Centre.

Over 1.70 lakh families of slum areas in 105 cities and towns have so far been given land rights under the programme, Patnaik said. Patnaik said the project will bring transformation in the lives of poor people.

The state government had launched the ‘Jaga Mission’ in 2017, and the slum development associations have been assigned to manage the ‘Biju Adarsh Colonies’, and a provision has been made to allocate 25 per cent of the municipal budget to these bodies for the development of infrastructure.

Patnaik said the ‘Jaga Mission’ also provides social and economic justice to the poor as they have an equal right to the benefits of development and growth. This will continue to play an important role in bringing happiness to the lives of 17 lakh slum-dwellers of the state.

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