Mission poverty reduction successful, OTELP extended - The New Indian Express

Mission poverty reduction successful, OTELP extended

Published: 25th November 2012 10:54 AM

Last Updated: 25th November 2012 10:54 AM

Impressed by the success of the poverty reduction mission under the Odisha Tribal Empowerment and Livelihood Programme (OTELP), International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD), the donor agency, has extended the programme period by one year to September 2014.

“The project performance in Odisha remains satisfactory. It remains one of the best performing donor-funded projects in one of India’s most difficult states,” said an IFAD communication justifying the need for extension of the programme.

A supervision report submitted by the joint review mission of IFAD in August rated OTELP with a score of 5 in the scale of 1-6. This is considered to be the highest rating among the IFAD-assisted programmes in Asia.

The principal indicators for evaluation adopted by the team were quality of financial management, compliance with loan covenants, quality of project management, poverty focus, gender focus, effectiveness and innovativeness of implementation.  The progress of the livelihood programme was discussed at the programme steering committee meeting of OTELP here on Friday under the chairmanship of Chief Secretary BK Patnaik. OTELP Director Susanta Nanda informed the meeting about the progress achieved in the project areas.

According to the progress card, the project has reached 56,180 households under 32 blocks in seven districts of Koraput, Malkangiri, Rayagada, Nabarangpur, Gajapati, Kandhamal and Kalahandi. In the project areas 4,372 self-help groups (SHGs) have been mobilised. The SHGs have saved over Rs 10 crore and mobilised Rs 7.4 crore bank loans for micro-economic activities.

Apart from creating additional irrigation potential for 13,974 hectares (benefiting 12,826 farmers) through micro shed projects, 9,591 hectares of fallow land has been developed into farmland. Pipe water provision has been made for 340 villages.

“The survey shows that only 23 per cent of people in the project villages report shortage of food compared to 70 per cent in tribal villages not covered under the programme,” official sources said.

The State Government has received grant-in-aid of Rs 299 crore till date and the expenditure till March was Rs 216 crore. OTELP Plus has been planned for leftout blocks in all the seven districts for 513 micro sheds in 1,200 villages.

In total OTELP Plus will be implemented in 27 blocks out of which 12 are new blocks and 15 are leftout villages of the existing OTELP blocks.

Meanwhile, the OTELP Plus has been launched in Koraput district covering four different ITDAs. The fund requirement for implementation of OTELP Plus for next seven years has been estimated at Rs 555 crore.

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