Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has completed 1st year of his fifth term in office in Odisha. The longest-serving Chief Minister has been instrumental in ushering Odisha into a new era of transformation.
Naveen Patnaik, who became the Chief Minister in 2000, has been successful in providing a stable and strong government to Odisha and taking it on the path of sustained progress. The most popular mass leader of Odisha, Naveen is adored by millions for his crystal clear image, corruption-free and transparent government for two decades.
Through his sheer commitment to the cause of common man, he has won the minds and hearts of the people and enjoys unparalleled support and affection of the populace, and remains invincible ever since he entered into politics. Naveen maintains a very low profile in public life and continues to lead a life of austerity donning white kurta-pyjamas and a pair of chappals. He displays an aura of quiet, confidence and strength. The constant electoral successes have only made him more humble and even more reticent. Under his leadership, the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) has only got stronger over the years winning faith of the people.
A staunch crusader of socio-economic development, his pro-people and development-oriented policies have made Odisha one of the fastest growing states in the country.
The last one year has been the most transformative in the history of Odisha. There are many achievements for the Naveen led government in these two decades.
Some of the major achievements of Odisha under the leadership of Naveen Patnaik in the last two decades can be summarized in the following broad categories.
Economic Growth: Under the leadership of Naveen Patnaik, Odisha’s economy is consistently growing at a higher rate compared to the national growth. During last seven years, the average growth rate of Odisha has remained about 8 percent compared to national average of about 6.9 percent. In spite of slowdown in global and national economy, Odisha’s economy continues to thrive. Along with its Manufacturing sector, the Information Technology and software industry is also experiencing robust growth.
Odisha on Global Tourism Map:Odisha tourism has flourished over the years due to the proactive measures taken by the State Government. The Chief Minister’s mega plan to transform Puri into a World Heritage City, EkamraKshetra Amenities and Monuments RevivalAction (EKAMRA) Plan, decongestion plan for Cuttack, development package for various religious institutions of different faiths have boosted the state tourism. Organization of world class events such as the Eco retreat has been appreciated by all. While international tourist footfalls to the state have touched more than a lakh, about 1.5 million domestic tourists visited Odisha in the 2018-19.
Transforming Healthcare: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s vision to provide Universal Healthcare is well reflected in the BSKY scheme that assures free health services to all the people from local health centers to Medical Colleges. Besides, over 70 lakh economically vulnerable families in the State are provided annual Health coverage of Rs.5 lakh per family and Rs.10 lakh for thewomen members of the family. The government has taken onto itself to provide advanced and modern healthcare for everybody in the state. For this, starting from village levels to the medical colleges, the government has upgraded the available infrastructure. While the facilities in CHCs and UPHCs have been enhanced, most of the DHHs have been provided with new infrastructure facilities. The number of beds has been increased substantially in these hospitals. Accordingly, the number of posts of doctors in the state has also been increased.
The most important decision of the state government in the healthcare sector is to transform the SCB Medical College and Hospital into an AIIMS Plus integrated medical institution with 3000 beds having all modern facilities. This will be carried out with an investment of a staggering amount of One Thousand Crore rupees.
Transformation of Heritage Sites: One of the most important decisions taken by the Chief Minister is the transformation of the heritage sites in the state. Starting with the holiest place of the country – the Jagannath Temple, the state government has taken the initiative to develop the amenities at Lingaraja Temple and all other heritage sites. The government aims to transformation Puri as a world heritage site.and for this all efforts are being done. As part of its plan to make Puri a world heritage city, the government has announced a package of Rs 500 crore. In addition, huge infrastructure and beautification programmes have also been planned for the city. Multi-lane roads, flyover bridges, multi- level parking systems, amenities for devotees of Lord Jagannath, revival of the Musa River, rehabilitation of affected families in security zone, renovation of existing lakes and creation of a new lake and renovation of mutts have been included in the package. Also, various projects worth Rs 265 crore for Puri under the ABADHA scheme were also announced by the Chief Minister.
For Lingaraj Temple, the government has prepared the EkamraKshetra Redevelopment Plan and has decided to develop an area of 66acres. The redevelopment plan includes preserving heritage and development of the nine sites and their nearby areas with an expenditure of around Rs 700 crore.In addition to this Naveen has also sanctioned an amount of Rs. 23 Crore for development of Pilgrim Amenities at various religious institutions of the state.
Secular Credentials in Helping MinorityInstitutions: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has announced financial aid to a number of important minority institutions and heritage sites. He has sanctioned Rs 16 crore for creation of amenities in minorities religious institutions. As per the decision, Satyanagar Jesus Christ & Mother Merry, Bhubaneswar Cathlic Church and Capital Masjid, Unit-4 will get Rs.2 crore each for the purpose.Cuttack Odia Baptist Church, Mission Road Cuttack and Qadam-e-Rasul Masjid, Darghabazar, Cuttack will also get Rs.2 crore each.Besides Kendrapara Fakirabad Markazi Masjid, BhadrakPuruna Bazar Jama Masjid, SambalpurZilla School ChhakPaltan Masjid, SambalpurSt.Joseph, Cathedral (Roman Cathlic), Jammia Masjid of Bhapur Bazar, Berhampur, Giri Road Berhampur Odia Baptist Church (CNI), Rourkela Bishop Missionary (Roman Cathlic) and Rajgangpur Sunni Jamma Masjid will also be provided with Rs.1 crore each for development of amenities and community hall in their respective institutions.
Enumeration of Backward Castes:Reiterating his commitment to welfare of all people irrespective of caste and creed, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has taken a bold decision for Enumeration of Backward Castes. The unanimous passing of the resolution brought by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik in the Odisha Assembly regarding social and educational enumeration of the Backward Classes in the state is a historic decision that is going to change the development paradigm in the state. It can be said as the greatest tribute to Gandhian philosophy of service to Backward classes. In his speech during the passing of the resolution in the assembly, Naveen said the survey of the Backward Classes will be a fitting tribute to Mahatma Gandhi and his ideals of empowerment of the vulnerable sections of the society.
Communal Harmony, the Hallmark of Naveen Govt:
Odisha is one of the few states in the country which have seen least number of communal tensions in the last few decades. Because of the secular credentials of the state, all communities live a peaceful life and brotherhood is benchmark. The hallmark of Naveen’s administration is taking all along in the development of the state.This has helped the state attract large industrial investments to the state.A peaceful society will help uninterrupted development and growth and hence, Odisha has been able to successfully facilitate industrialisation in the state. Naveen’generosity and inclusive approach strengthens the secular and pluralistic fabric of Odisha.
5T and Mo Sarkar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s 5T manta – Teamwork, Transparency, Technology and Time leading to Transformation coupled with “Mo Sarkar” has brought a new revolution in governance and administration empowering the common man. The innovative governance initiative has caught the imagination of all including policy makers and the general public. Mo Sarkar has already led a fundamental change in the mindset among the public servants while dealing with the people. It has inculcated a greater sense of accountability and transparency in the public departments. The Mo Sarkar movement has made the public servants to realize the Naveen Patnaik’s philosophy that people are the real masters in a democracy and all the institutions are there to serve them with utmost dignity. By August 15 this year, the people of the State will have the freedom not to visit government offices for any services. They will have the option of online services or professionally run common service centre or door delivery. Meanwhile, all departments of the State government have been brought under the ‘Mo Sarkar’ initiative from March 5.
AmphanCyclone – Mission Zero Casualty Achieved
Odisha demonstrated its prowess in management of disasters during the Super Cyclone Amphanthat hit the eastern states of Odisha and West Bengalthis month. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’sdirections for zero casualty was successfully achieved. More than two lakh people were evacuated from low laying areas to safer places. About 45 lakh people were affected by the cyclone. Damage to property was also minimized with proper management of resources. Damaged electrical infrastructure was restored within a week of the Super cyclone. All this was achieved amidst the ongoing lockdown imposed due to Coronavirus Pandemic. It is for the first time that there were no deaths in the state due to cyclone. Standing upto its responsibility as a good neighbor, Odisha helped Cyclone ravaged West Bengal with men and materials. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik ordered for sending members of ODRAF and Fire services to the neighboring state immediately and also asked the officials to supply 500 tonnes of polythene sheets to Bengal.
Leader In COVID-19 Management
The spread of Coronavirus Pandemic has been a cause of concern for almost all countries of the world. India and its states are also not spared from this dangerous disease. But the way Odisha has managed the pandemic needs to be lauded. Odisha declared statewide lockdown before the central government announced. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik called on the citizens of the state to fight the virus collectively. He ensured that the administration is ready to fight the virus and activated the response mechanism immediately. Medical infrastructure in the state was strengthened and a large number of Covid-19 special hospitals were set up. Within two months, the state had more than five thousand five hundred dedicated covid-19 beds. Also healthcare infrastructure was ready with more than 8 thousand isolation beds in various hospitals. The state government made provisions for containment centers in each of the gram panchayats. More than 12 thousand quarantine centers were put up for people who were coming back to the state. Odisha saw the return of more than 3 lakh 50 thousand migrant workers from other states who were provided quarantine facilities.
The first case of Coronavirus wasdetected in the state on March16th and the total number of positive cases has crossed 16 hundred till date. Of these more than 50mpercent have been cured and have returned to their homes. The death rate in the state due to Covid-19 is among the lowest in the country. The per million tests in the state stood at 3029 against all India average of 2490. Till date a total of 1, 39, 311 COVID-19 tests have been carried out in the State.
Devolution of powers to the Panchayat level has helped the government to well manage the affairs related to Covid-19. The active participation of PRI members helped stopthe spread of the deadly virus.
Today Odisha can boast itself for being successfully fighting the battle against a disease about which a little is known. Large scale testing, better utilization of manpower and resources, and over all a humane approach to the issue has helped the administration in containing the virus to a large extent.