BHUBANESWAR: Faced with delay in taking up projects resulting in cost overruns as well as funds crunch, Odisha Government has decided to go for construction of integrated infrastructure complex, including old age homes, with the funding support from District Mineral Foundation (DMF).
In 2016, Government had envisaged construction of old age homes and rehabilitation centres in all 30 districts as mandated under Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens Act, 2007 to ensure a peaceful life to the neglected and destitute senior citizens as well as widows and mentally retarded children.
The five-year project started in 2017 was to be completed by 2022. Though work initially started in nine districts - Bhadrak, Khurda, Puri, Cuttack, Ganjam, Nabarangpur, Kandhamal, Sambalpur and Malkangiri and Rs 70 crore has been released out of the State budget so far, only around 20 per cent work is complete.
Initially the work was hampered due to land dispute, delay in land alienation and local agitations but the pandemic cast a shadow this year.
“In some districts, construction work started after land disputes were resolved and with help of police in June last year,” said an official.Meanwhile, it has been decided that the infrastructure complex in nine districts - Jharsuguda, Keonjhar, Koraput, Angul, Dhenkanal, Jajpur, Sundargarh, Rayagada and Mayurbhanj - will be funded by the DMF and construction of centres in rest 12 districts will be taken up from the State budget.
Accordingly, the total cost of the project has been revised to Rs 1,191.58 crore of which Rs 858.22 crore has been proposed to be met from State budget and balance Rs 333.36 crore from DMF.The infrastructure complex having old-age home, disabilities rehabilitation centre, facilities for vocational training, meditation and prayer hall and other supporting amenities will be built on 25 acre of land.
The Collectors of districts where the facility will be built with funds from DMF have been directed to furnish firm commitment for funding the project. NGO or agency which would be engaged in managing the integrated complexes will bear the maintenance cost out of the grants received by them.
“It has also been decided to deploy one officer along with five support staff to monitor the functioning of the complex. District administration will identify the NGO and in case, a corporate organisation agrees to fund major portion of the cost of the project, such organisations will be allowed to select the NGO to run it,” the official said.
Each complex will accommodate about 150 to 200 senior citizens/destitute, 100 to 200 children with physical disabilities and 50 children with intellectual disabilities.
Infrastructure complex to be constructed in 30 districts
Total cost of the project has been revised to Rs 1,191.58 crore
Rs 858.22 crore to be met from State budget
Rs 333.36 crore from DMF