Sanjeev Kumar Pradhan

Bhubaneswar: With an aim to digitally empower the women in the State, Odisha government today announced to provide smart phones to all the 70 lakh women working with the six lakh Self Help Groups (SHGs) across Odisha.

The announcement was made by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik during the women entrepreneurship sectoral session on the fourth day of the Make in Odisha conclave in Bhubaneswar.

Patnaik said, "I would like to show my gratitude to the women of Odisha. You are the strength in our State, and I see with you the way forward for us. We aim to digitally empower all the six lakh groups present in the state under the Mission Shakti movement by providing them smart phones. My dream is to see that every woman has access to knowledge economy.”

“Digital empowerment will further accelerate the socio political and economic empowerment of women,” the CM added.

On the fourth day of the conclave, sectoral sessions were held on the growth of Electronics and Information & Technology sector, Social and Corporate responsibility. This apart, a special session was held on the theme finance and marketing in the State.

As per sources, a proposal was made for investment of Rs 1412 crore in Agri-Business sector. While Reliance Retail assured an investment of Rs 300 crore, ITC proposed that it will invest Rs 520 crore in the State.

Apart from this, six companies have given proposals for a total investment of Rs 3900 crore in IT & Electronics sector.

During the plenary session on 'Odisha: Higher Education for a better tomorrow', Bishnupada Sethi, Commissioner-Cum-Secretary, Higher Education said, ”By the end of this year, 90000 students will have laptops provided by the Government of Odisha.”

Sethi also mentioned that the state selection board, which was defunct for 14 years, has now been revived.