Bhubaneswar: The state government Friday decided to expand the coverage area of the massive plantation drive–Green Mahanadi Mission– for conservation of rivers and stopping soil erosion and to bring all ULBs under LED street lights .
The state Cabinet headed by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Friday gave its nod in this regard.
The Cabinet approved 10 proposals vis a vis the Green Mahanadi Mission (GMM), of which five were announced Friday by Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi while the remaining will be declared at the Make in Odisha conclave starting November 11.
The Green Mahanadi Mission (GMM), which was undertaken on the sand banks of Mahanadi and its tributaries Tel and Ib, will now be extended to the banks of Baitarani, Brahmani, Rushikulya and their tributaries, Padhi told reporters after the meet.
“Massive plantation drive will be undertaken along a kilometre-wide band on the river banks. It will help conserve water and rejuvenate the depleting water levels in those rivers,” he said. A state-level project implementation committee headed by him and district GMM committees have been formed under the chairmanship of concerned collectors, he said.
The project will be implemented within a period of five years (2018-19 to 2022-23) at an estimated cost of Rs 448 crore, of which Rs 415 crore is for plantation activities and the rest for non-plantation purpose, Padhi said.
The Cabinet also decided to replace conventional street lights with LED street lights in all urban local bodies (ULBs) and install new ones in areas bereft of either.
Padhi said LED street lights will be installed in all 47 municipalities, 62 notified area councils (NACs) and five municipal corporation towns. At present, some cities like Bhubaneswar have LED street lights. But, all the conventional street lights have not been replaced at some places while there are no street lights in some areas under the ULBs, he said.
He said the decision was taken to ensure 100 per cent street lighting in all ULBs. “Odisha will be the only state to have 100 per cent LED street lights in urban areas,” Padhi said.
The state government has roped in Central undertaking Energy Efficiency Services Ltd (ESSL) to execute the project for replacement of conventional street lights while different agencies will install new street lights in green field areas, he pointed out.
The agencies will set up poles, make earthing facilities and operate and maintain the LED street lights for a period of seven years, he said.
For implementation of the project, the state will pay Rs 281.25 crore while the seven-year maintenance cost of Rs 67.12 crore will be borne by the concerned ULB, Padhi stated.
For the other project, the state will bear Rs 326 crore, including operation and maintenance cost for seven years.
The panel also approved tenders worth Rs 220.73 crore for construction of a 100-seat new government medical college at Bhawanipatna in Kalahandi district. The project is targeted to be completed within two years.
Another tender worth Rs 117 crore for construction of a new building and hostels of Sishu Bhawan in Cuttack also got the Cabinet nod. The government targets to complete the project in two years.