Odisha government asks OSAM Board to drop non-starter warehouse projects

As many of the sanctioned projects remained a non-starter till 2020-21, a high power committee on RIDF decided in March 2021 to drop all of them.

Published: 22nd June 2022 04:54 AM  |   Last Updated: 22nd June 2022 04:54 AM   |  A+A-

Warehousing, Logistics

Image used for representational purposes only. (File photo| EPS)

By Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR:  The State government has asked the Odisha State Agriculture Marketing (OSAM) Board to drop all projects that were sanctioned under the Rural infrastructure development fund (RIDF) but remained a non-starter so far.

The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Nabard) had sanctioned `1,077 crore to the State in 2014-15 for the construction of 3,700 rural godowns with a combined storage space of 9.23 lakh tonne. The proposed capacity of each of the godowns was 5,000 tonne.

While the department is tightlipped on the number of projects taken up and completed, sources said that an amount of `183 crore was sanctioned from the Warehouse Infrastructure Fund (WIF), a corpus under RIDF created especially to develop warehouse capacity in rural areas, to OSAM Board.

As many of the sanctioned projects remained a non-starter till 2020-21, a high power committee on RIDF decided in March 2021 to drop all of them. Accordingly, the Finance department asked the Cooperation department to submit a list of projects to be dropped. The OSAM Board, the nodal agency for the execution of the warehouse projects, was asked to deposit the funds sanctioned against those projects in the government account. The board deposited accrued interest of Rs 29.50 crore in the government account on March 30, 2021 and principal amount of Rs 19.30 crore on July 5 the same year.

An amount of Rs 6 crore has been kept with OSAM Board for construction of 347 godowns which will be WDRA (Warehouse Development and Regulatory Authority) compliant and operational. A recent review by the department revealed that four projects - one godown each at  Bartana SCS of Bhadrak district and Khaprakhol PACS of Bolangir district and two godowns at Harichandanpur LAMPCS of Keonjhar district - could not be completed due to land disputes.

The department has sought a report from the office of the Registrar of Cooperative Societies about the progress of the four projects with a direction to drop them if not started yet.


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