BHAWANIPATNA: Kalahandi is no longer a laboratory to study poverty, it has become a role model of development in the country, said Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik here on Thursday at his first public meeting in the aftermath of Covid-19.
The CM said Kalahandi has shown Odisha the path of development. It is no longer the land of hunger. The district has turned into a rice bowl as Kalahandi is the second-largest producer of paddy and the farmers here are feeding the nation, he said.
Inaugurating the lift irrigation project of Indravati constructed at Rs 986.71 crore, Naveen appealed for full utilisation of the water. Indravati is not merely a river, it is our mother and lifeline, he said and announced that a museum, temple and park dedicated to Indravati will be developed soon. The irrigation project will provide irrigation to 25,275 ha land in Jaipatna, Koksara and Dharamgarh blocks which were hitherto not getting irrigation facilities of Indravati project due to high alleviation location.
The CM also inaugurated 53 other projects constructed with an estimated cost of Rs 1064.86 crore and laid the foundation stone of 52 projects to be built at an investment of around Rs 1020.34 crore. Prior to the visit of CM, ministers and office-bearers of the party highlighted the achievement of the state government ever since Naveen Patnaik became the CM. Lok Sabha member Basanta Panda highlighted different benefits and measures taken by the Central government for the benefit of farmers and farm sector.
The CM’s visit and a series of programmes turned it into a mega political event for BJD with several MLAs, ministers and office-bearers of the party camping here two days prior to the ceremony.
The party leaders visited 38 gram panchayats of Koksara, Jaipatna and Dharamgarh blocks and interacted with villagers to make them aware about various welfare measures undertaken by the BJD government. Elaborate arrangement were made at all panchayats to watch the function and listen to the CM through LED television sets.