The Telegraph
Sunday , August 10 , 2014
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Govt gears up to walk the talk

Bhubaneswar, Aug. 9: Process has been initiated to implement the promises made by the BJD in the last general election.

The planning and co-ordination department has asked all departments to prepare action plans, according to the party’s election manifesto.

In a letter to the secretaries of all departments, special secretary of the planning and co-ordination department G.B. Reddy said: “Action initiated on the issues listed in the manifesto may be reported to this department. Further, progress on the actions taken will be reviewed quarterly.”

A government official said that once each department prepared the action plan, the financial implications would be examined.

The party’s intention to implement the poll promises became evident after Naveen Patnaik, in his first cabinet meeting after the swearing-in ceremony, said the government would go ahead with executing the promises made in the election manifesto.

In its election manifesto, the BJD has sought to project a pro-farmer image, promising, among other things, cheaper loan to farmers.

The party also promises to make the state hunger-free. Other promises made in the farm sector were creation of additional irrigation potential of more than one million hectares in the next five years, making available high-quality seeds, fertilisers, pesticides and technical inputs at the panchayat level and set-up of subsidy-based cold storage facilities in all blocks. It also pledges to set up a second agriculture university in the Kalahandi-Balangir-Koraput (KBK) region.

It has also promised to construct an expressway connecting northern and southern parts of the state — which will run through backward regions of the western and KBK districts.

It also promised to introduce two schemes — Chief Minister Sadak Yojana and Chief Minister Employment Generation Scheme.

The sadak yojana intends to provide connectivity to all villages having a population of 100 and less, which are not covered under any other scheme.

However, though move has begun to implement the new manifesto, promises made in the 2009 election manifesto remain unfulfilled.

The earlier manifesto, among other commitments, had promised to create 15 lakh jobs, revive defunct industries, accident insurance for schoolchildren, removal of bonded labour system and one hospital for each cluster of 5,000 families. The promises are on paper.

In the industrial sector, the party had announced that the government would make it mandatory for the industries to provide shares to gram panchayats and people from whom land was acquired and make them shareholders in the projects to ensure continuous income for the gram panchayats and the people.

Though the BJD is yet to give property rights to the downtrodden class, it promised to provide assistance to make all kuccha houses pucca in the state.

The proposed Shelter Security Mission will monitor all these activities.