Sambalpur's IIC complex underutilised, awaits govt approval for full operation

The facility includes amenities for recreation, entertainment, sports, yoga, and medical care.
Integrated Infrastructure Complex (IIC)
Integrated Infrastructure Complex (IIC) Photo | Express

SAMBALPUR: More than two years after its inauguration, the Integrated Infrastructure Complex (IIC) at Baijamunda in Sambalpur remains underutilised, failing to serve its purpose of rehabilitating elderly persons, persons with disabilities (PwD), and destitutes.

Developed over 19.77 acre at a cost of Rs 25.43 crore by the Odisha Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (IDCO), the three-storey IIC was designed to empower the needy and homeless. It aimed to provide shelter and geriatric care to older persons abandoned by their families and to support drug addicts and transgenders through infrastructural assistance, rescue, care, protection, and skill development.

The facility includes amenities for recreation, entertainment, sports, yoga, and medical care.

However, the complex has not achieved its objectives. Initially, 47 beggars were rehabilitated at the IIC, but they were relocated due to their unsuitable behaviour.

Currently, the complex accommodates only 40 children with hearing and visual impairments, who are enrolled in a special school on the premises.

A team of seven staff members manages their food and accommodation. The IIC has a capacity for approximately 600 people, including 200 elderly persons, but no other beneficiaries have been housed there.

District social security officer (DSSO) Thabira Mahananda explained that five categories were identified for rehabilitation, including elderly persons, destitutes, and individuals with intellectual, visual, and hearing impairments. “The Expression of Interest (EoI) process for entities to manage the facility has been completed. However, we are awaiting government approval for rehabilitating all other categories. We have received permissions for the hearing and visually impaired children and accommodated them,” he stated.

Mahananda said they are awaiting government approval for the remaining categories. “The elderly will benefit once the complex becomes accessible to them,” he added.

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