Bhubaneswar: An integrated and development programme for rurban areas of Odisha under the Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission (SPMRM) – National Rurban Mission will be implemented with the joint support of the Central and State government. Odisha Chief Secretat A P Padhi chaired the newly formed State Level Empowered Committee (SLEC) that will look into the broad outlines of the Mission. Padhi as the chairman of the committee suggested prioritising the road, drinking water supply, and electricity, street lightening, sanitation, health and housing schemes along with establishment of agro-processing units in the rurban areas of the State in the first phase.
The Mission, launched by the Ministry of Rural Development, Govt of India targets at bridging rural urban divide, reducing poverty through enhanced income generating activities, development of small & medium enterprises and attracting investment in rural areas.
Panchyatiraj Secretary Deo Ranjan Kumar Singh said, the basic objective of the rurban mission is to stimulate economic development, enhance basic services and create well planned rurban localities in the State. And a decision in this regard has been taken to institutional structure for implementation of the Mission through a 3-tier structure in the State. These are Cluster Development and anagement Unit (CDMU) at cluster level, District Project Monitoring Unit (DPMU) under the chairmanship of Collector and State Level Empowered Committee ( SPMU). While the National Level the Empowered Committee of the National Mission Directorate with its expert group will monitor the programme. Panchayati Raj department has been nominated as the State Nodal Agency (SNA) for the Mission. The Director, NRLM P J Nath as State Mission Leader will and supervise on behalf of SPMRM. IIT, Kharagpur has been entrusted upon the task as the State Technical Support Agency (STSA) to provide technical support for preparation of action plans, project reports and provide handholding support for implementation of the scheme.
According to the Panchayati Secretary the rurban cluster has been conceived a cluster of villages that preserve the essence of rural community with focus on urban facilities. A cluster will consist of a unit of geographically contiguous villages with a population of about 25,000 to 50,000 in plains and coastal areas. In tribal, hilly and desert areas the cluster will consist of contiguous villages with a population of 5,000 to 15,000. The Mission Director, Nath added that it has been decided to cover 7 clusters including 5 from non-tribal and 2 from tribal areas in the first phase. The Mission will cover other areas of the State in phased manner. Integrated Action Plans will be prepared for each cluster. The fund for the projects will be mobilized through convergence of various central and state sector schemes and critical gap fund from the national rurban mission.
Principal Secretaries from the departments of Energy, Higher Education Industry, ST & SC Development and other senior officers from concerned departments also participated in the meeting.