Orissa panel recommends council for backward areas

Written by State Bureau | Bhubaneswar, Aug 7 | Updated: Aug 8 2008, 06:31am hrs
The Regional Imbalance Commission, appointed by the Orissa government, has recommended that the state government should have a separate development council for the backward districts of the state.

The commission has suggested the districts and blocks should be divided into four categoriesdeveloped, developing, backward and very backward.

The state government, however, will take a decision on the establishment of the Backward Areas Development Council after considering different options as it may trigger protest from other areas. There is already the Western Orissa Development Council (WODC), comprising of the western districts of Sambalpur, Bargarh, Jarsuguda, Balangir, Kalahandi and Nuapara.

The government apprehends the new council will dilute the authority of the WODC since districts like Balangir, Nuapara and Kalahandi will come under the new council.

The commission took four years to prepare the 100-page report.

According to the report, location of industries, agriculture output, standard of education, communication facility, health care availability and other parameters will be taken into account while categorising the district.

The commission has also recommended that the State Planning Board should be revamped to make it more functional. Full-time members should be appointed to the board to make it effective in charting other planning courses of in the state.