Rs 200cr for tribals under IAY

Bhubaneswar/Bhawanipatna: Two days after the Union Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh approved increase in Indira Awas Yojana (IAY) assistance for Below Poverty Line (BPL) families across the country, Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh in Bhawanipatna declared Rs 200 crore package for Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTG) under the rural housing scheme on Sunday.

According to the minister, about 2100 families in Kalahandi district alone will receive Rs 75,000 each for the construction of a pucca house.

On Thursday, the UPA Government had enhanced the assistance under its flagship IAY scheme from Rs 45,000 to Rs 70,000 per unit in plain areas and from Rs 48,500 to Rs 75,000 in hilly and difficult terrains.

Raising concern on the livelihood of the locals in tribal-dominated Kalahandi district, Ramesh declared the set up of four centres in the district to help market the Non Timber Forest Produces (NTFD) collected by the locals.

Ramesh also assured road connectivity to villages of the district having population of 250 or more under the UPA-flagship scheme Pradhan Matri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY). For this, he said Rs 100 crore would be spent in three years.

During his two-day visit to Odisha, the Union Minister said naxal issue in the state could be contained only through talks.