NITI Aayog Approves Infrastructure Schemes for Bastar
New Delhi : The NITI Aayog has given ‘in principle’ approval to various proposals related infrastructural development in Left-Wing Extremism (LWE)-affected Bastar region of Chhattisgarh.
The proposals include roads, telecommunication, education, Ujjwala yojana and expansion of banks.
Rajiv Kumat, Vice Chairman, NITI Aayog has also directed the Central Ministries to ensure speedy implementation of these suggestions and said that the Aayog will review the implementation process on a regular basis.
At an important meeting to implement Bastar Development Plan held here at the NITI Aayog, senior officials led by Chhattisgarh Chief Secretary Ajay Singh discussed these proposals with NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar, CEO Amitabh Kant, other members and Secretaries of various departments of the Government of India.
The Chief Secretary informed that ‘in principle’ approval has been given for construction of additional 600 km of roads in Bastar under Rashtriya Road project – 2 and Special Secretary (Home Ministry) has assured that implementation of this proposal will be done on priority.
The approval was also granted for sanctioning Rs 65 crore for expansion of telecom services and increasing connectivity in remote areas. The amount will be utilized for expansion of districts to development blocks connectivity in Bastar and expedite execution of 402 towers in the first phase and 1028 telecom towers in the second phase.
In a bid to strengthen education system, in principle approval was given for declaration of 10 LWE affected blocks as educationally backward blocks. During the meeting, approval was given for sanction of additional hostels for girls and upgrade ‘Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalayas’ to high schools. The approval was also given for providing assistance to ‘Vidya Mitan Yojana’ under National Mission for Secondary Education.
The State Chief Secretary said that kerosene quota of Chhattisgarh will be maintained at current levels till agencies of 26 new LPG distributors gets operational in Bastar under ‘Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana’. In the meeting it was informed that software has been modified and those women who were minor during the SECC survey and have now become adult will also be given gas connections under the ‘Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana’.
He added that approval was also given for expansion of banking services in remote rural areas of Bastar region and the Department of Financial Services has assured that they will immediately take up with banks to ensure that 88 new branches were opened in these areas. He said that Secretary (DFS, Government of India) will visit Chhattisgarh to review the progress.
The Chief Secretary said that NITI Aayog has also given approval for providing houses under ‘Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana’ to 1555 surrendered Naxalities and whose names do not figure in the Socio-Economic Caste Census 2011. The vice chairman issued instructions to Joint Secretary, Rural Development Ministry, to immediately resolve the matter.
It was informed during the meeting that the central government has agreed to include solid waste management plant, Ujjwala gas storage, community halls, infrastructure made for disabled person and bus depots in the list of non-liner items. The step will ease difficulties coming in the way of construction of these infrastructures in Bastar.