By Local Wire Bureau
BHUBANESWAR, September 24 (Local Wire) The Odisha cabinet chaired by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Monday decided that works under the State Government’s new flagship ‘Ama Gaon Ama Bikash’ scheme would be executed departmentally and no contractor will be involved.
The decision seems to have been taken in the wake of a series of corruption charges levelled by opposition parties, which termed Naveen Government a ‘PC (Percentage) Sarkar’.
If the projects are executed by officials of concerned departments, it would not only help the Government for its image make-over, corruption can be checked by making the officials supervising the works accountable.
The cabinet also approved the budget of Rs 1250 crore earmarked for the scheme for 2018-19. According to the decision, the ceiling limit for a project would be between Rs 1 lakh to Rs 10 lakh and executed by respective Panchayat Samitis following due procedure.
“The Government may relax ceiling limit in exceptional cases and provision of Goods and Services Tax (GST) will not be applicable for departmentally execution of works. District collectors would be overall charge of supervision and monitoring of work under the scheme. The projects approved by the Government will be completed within a period of one year,” Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi told reporters after the cabinet meeting.
In case of no expenditure within six month, Padhi said, the funds will be diverted to some other project as decided by the Government. The objective of the scheme is to take up new projects that will contribute to overall development of community and wellbeing of people at Panchayat level.
The cabinet also approved restructuring and strengthening of Agriculture and Food Production Service cadre with introduction of new posts in district level like Chief District Agriculture Officer (CDAO), Agriculture District Officer (ADO) and Block Agriculture Officer (BAO).
The Chief Secretary said the cadre restructuring would bring paradigm change in delivery of services to farmers in terms of execution of Government schemes and utilisation of Central and State funds.