We have fulfilled promises made to Odisha’s people: Naveen Patnaik

Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday said his government has fulfilled the promises made to the state’s 4.5 crore people to create “a new Odisha”.

“The 4.5 crore people of Odisha are of my family. I have been serving Odisha with the blessings of Lord Jagannath and you all. Whatever promises I make before my family, I’ll keep on working to fulfil them in a bid to create a new Odisha,” he said.

Patnaik on Tuesday reviewed the implementation of his Biju Janata Dal’s 2014 poll promises at the Council of Ministers’ meeting, possibly the last one in the fourth term of his government before the ensuing Lok Sabha and Assembly elections.

He presented some of the highlights of the manifesto promises made and achievements of his government in the last five years.

“We had committed to convert all the kucha (temporary) houses in the rural areas into pucca (permanent) houses. During the last five years, we have constructed more than 20 lakh pucca houses for our people,” he said.

The Chief Minister also said that his government has created additional irrigation potential of 9 lakh hectares and are in the process of taking it to 10 lakh hectares by May 2019.

“It is my firm belief that deserving people even if they are not in the BPL list must be covered under food security. Towards this objective, we are implementing our own Food Security Scheme,” he added.

About youth empowerment, he said the government is providing education loans at 1 per cent interest, career counselling centres have been opened in universities and colleges and the government has provided direct and indirect employment opportunities to the 12 lakh youths out of which 1.12 lakh is in the government sector.

Patnaik said through the Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana, the government is providing universal health coverage, and in the field of woman empowerment, his government promised to provide loans to self-help groups at the rate of one per cent but were providing them at zero per cent rate.