Bhubaneswar: The Odisha government today decided to increase the number of clusters to 10 from five under the Rurban Mission.
The decision i this regard was taken at the State Level Empowerment Committee (SLEC) meeting presided over by Chief secretary A P Padhi.
“Earlier 5 clusters were included in the Rurban Mission. Today the SLEC recommended for inclusion of 5 more clusters,” panchayati raj secretary Deo Ranjan Singh said after the SLEC meeting.
The newly recommend areas include under the Rurban Mission were Khalikot of Ganjam district, Bhedan of Bargarh district, Umorkote of Nabrangpur district, Kothgarh of Kandhamal district and Tusura of Bolangir district.
Earlier 5 areas namely Samasingha of Jharsuguda district, Banapur of Khorda district, Talabasta of Cuttack district, Thakurmunda of Mayurbhanj district and Utkela of Kalahandi district were included under the Rurban Mission.
Singh said the committee today also considered the draft Integrated Cluster Development Plan (ICAP) prepared for earlier included areas.
The ICAP envisaged projects of worth around Rs 500 crore for these five areas. While 70 per cent of the estimated expenditure would be arranged from the convergence of ongoing plans and schemes at the State level, the remaining 30 per cent expenditure would be provided by the central government.
Under the Rurban Mission, areas close to major towns and cities would be provided with all the basic facilities.
The projects like road connectivity, pipe water supply, irrigation, solid waste management, digital connectivity, street lights, sanitation projects, income generating livelihood activities, health services, LPG connections and others have been seen as common felt needs in these areas.
These clusters would be developed as rurban villages preserving the nature and essence of rural community life with urban living facilities. Each cluster will be developed and managed as one planning area.
Thakurmunda in Mayurbhanj district will be developed as a cluster with multiple sustainable livelihood opportunities while Utkela will be developed as a commerce cluster.
Similarly, Talabasta as a agro cluster, Banapur as a tourism cluster and Samasingha will be developed as a village handicraft cluster.
The Chief Secretary directed officials to create facilities for promotion of livelihood and income generating activities in each of the focus sectors in identified clusters.