Task force formed to make Odisha slum free

With the objective to make the State slum-free, the State Government has constituted Odisha Slum Development Task Force under the chairmanship of Chief Secretary Bijay Kumar Patnaik.

According to official sources, OSDTF would help in resource mobilisation through multilateral and bilateral funding agencies and promotion of convergence by removing interdepartmental and interagency bottlenecks.

In the first phase, six cities of the State, like Bhubaneswar, Puri, Cuttack, Brahmapur, Sambalpur and Rourkela have been identified to make them slum-free urban local bodies, the sources said.

The Task Force would prioritise the slums to be taken up for resettlement and decide appropriate projects for development.

Meanwhile, as an action plan, the State Government has already constituted a State-level steering committee under the chairmanship of the Chief Minister to examine and approve the project reports submitted by the implementing agencies in consultation with the OSDTF.

The ‘slum free’ projects would be implemented jointly by the State Government and the Centrally-sponsored Rajiv Gandhi Awas Yojana. Both the State and the Central  Government would bear the cost of the project to be taken up on 50-50 basis, sources said.

Under the scheme, resettlement of slum areas and infrastructure development would be taken up on priority basis.

In order to prepare and implement the projects, city-level technical cells have been set up for mobilisation of people through NGO’s. The detailed project reports would be prepared after taking up socio-economic survey in the proposed cities. And it has been decided to undertake GIS mapping of the slum areas of the State soon, the sources said.

Meanwhile, the sources said two Pilot Projects  have been prepared — one for Rangamatia by the Bhubaneswar Municipal Commission and the other by the Cuttack Municipal Corporation — for 10 slums.

They said the Chief Secretary has directed the BDA and the BMC authorities to prepare a detailed project report for making the Unit-1, Unit-6 and Kargil road area slum-free.

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