Bhubaneswar: The state government, Tuesday, announced temporary closure of all Aahar centres across the state, except for those located in or near hospitals, till March 29.
In a letter to all the collectors-cum-presidents of district Aahar society and municipal commissioners of Bhubaneswar, Berhampur, Cuttack, Sambalpur and Rourkela, Sangramjit Nayak, Director Municipal Administration and additional secretary to government directed that as the state government has notified to lock down all districts till March 29 in view of the prevention and containment of COVID-19, all the Aahar kendras will be temporary closed in all the districts and municipal corporations except the those in and near hospital premises till March 29, 2020. This apart, the public parks in all the districts will also be closed during this period.
There are 158 Aahar centres and 34 central kitchens in the state which comes under the Housing and Urban Development department, the nodal department to implement the Aahaar program in the state.
Aahaar program was launched April 1, 2015 in Odisha.
The closure will impact the poor and homeless who depend on this food centres for the low-priced meal.