The year 2015 will go down the annals of Sambalpur history as an eventful one considering the rapid progress it made on the infrastructure and education fronts. But, policing remained a grey area and poor agriculture scenario and farmer suicides haunted the district till the very end.
The district is not only witnessing a big leap in public infrastructure development projects, but also is set to become a role model in rural development through proper use of Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana and IAP.
After long wait, work on a second bridge over river Mahanadi has taken off while second flyover to ease traffic on the city is in the pipeline.
Similarly, a modern bus terminus is almost ready for operation while electric crematorium, development of five parks, sports complex with thrust on water sports adjacent to Mahanadi Coalfields, pumping stations to prevent deluge during monsoon, new high level bridges over Dhobijoar Nullah for free passage of flood and rain water, doubling of the Ring Road and plying of city bus are gradually changing the landscape of the city.
The district had its share of laurels on the education front too with India Institute of Management (IIM) and Odisha State Open University coming up here.
This apart, the Gangadhar Meher College was upgraded into a Unitary University, while after 50 long years, a second Kendriya Vidyalaya began operation in Burla. The major achievement in the field of education, however, was admission of more than a 100 underprivileged students to public schools in the city under Government welfare schemes on the initiative of the district administration.
2 RURAL DEVELOPMENT
The inaccessible village of Sarada, deep inside Badrama Wildlife Sanctuary, not only became accessible but also got electrified and was provided with drinking water.
The story of Maoist-infested village of Tabloi is no different as the villagers have also been provided with electricity, drinking water, while traditional harvesting structures have been revived and water harvesting structures provided.
2 CRIME CONTROL
The year saw policing at its lowest ebb with criminals striking at will and anti-social activity flourishing as district police remained in deep slumber.
Police are yet to make any breakthrough in the attack on yesteryear Odia cinestar Shanti Swarup Mishra and murder of security supervisor of Mahanadi Coalfields Limited, bank loot attempt at Thelkuli and at Lapang.
However, the CRPF managed to keep the Maoists out of the district with their sustained efforts.
2 Political scene
The political scenario saw an upheaval with the arrest of former Sambalpur BJP MLA Jayanarayan Mishra for wielding a sword during Hanuman Jayanti procession despite prohibitory orders imposed by the district administration on possession of arms on the occasion.
On the other hand, his bete noire Suresh Pujari went on to be become BJP national secretary.
The BJD continued to be a divided house over different issues while Congress continued to be a anchor-less ship with no leader strong enough to lead from the front.