Bhubaneswar, May 19: NITI Ayog CEO Amitabh Kant today said that the Odisha government submitted very practical, positive and pertinent suggestions on the Aspirational District programme – a joint initiative of the Union government and State governments.
“NITI Ayog will take up the issues with respective Ministries and find out appropriate solutions,” the Chief Executive Officer of NITI Ayog Amitabh Kant said after holding a brain storming exercise with Central Pravari officers, Development Commissioner R Balakrishnan, Secretaries of different departments of State Government and Collectors of the concerned districts.
Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi asserted about the programme set on fast track at the high level meeting. He pointed out the common basic requirements of the 10 identified districts on 5 thematic areas as outlined by NITI Ayog, said official sources.
Padhi pointed out the urgent need for creation of banking facilities, establishment of data and digital connectivity, credit flow to agriculture and MS&ME sector from commercial banks, establishment of railway connectivity, timely flow of ST and SC scholarships, flexibility in the flagship programmes like Pradhan Mantri Matrubandana Yojana and Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana suiting the state requirements.
The sources said, discussions in the meeting revealed that the transformation of Aspirational District Programmes focuses on 5 thematic areas like Health & Nutrition, Education, Agriculture & Water Resources, Financial Inclusion & Skill Development and Basic Infrastructure.
Several indicators in each theme were discussed in the meeting, the sources said adding, these included 13 indicators in health & nutrition, 8 indicators in education, 10 in agriculture & water resources, 7 in financial inclusion, 5 in skill development and 6 indicators in basic infrastructure making a total of 49 indicators. Tentative monitorable points on these indicators were also discussed in the meeting.
The Collectors from 10 aspirational districts namely Koraput, Gajapati, Nuapada, Kandhamal, Dhenkanal, Nabarangpur, Kalahandi, Bolangir, Malkangiri and Rayagada participated in the discussion over the video conferencing.
The Collectors appraised about the strength, potential, present status and challenges of their respective districts which were taken note by Kant.
They mostly pointed out the challenges like lack of banking facility, upgradation of medicals, starting of health & wellness centers, data connectivity, additional grant to non-DMF and Non-OMBADC and extremist effected districts.
Advisor NITI Ayog Rakesh Ranjan, Consultant Rama Kama Raju, Principal Secretary Finance Tuhin Kanta Pandey, Principal Secretary Water Resources Pradeep Kumar Jena, Principal Secretary Panchayati Raj Deo Ranjan Kumar Singh, Principal Secretary Agriculture Sourav Garg, Secretary Higher Education Bishnupada Sethi, Additional Secretary Union Government Usha Padhi, Sandeep Kumar Nayak, Suresh Kumar Vashisth along with other senior officers from NITI Ayog, Union Government and