The Centre would take steps to expedite the process of sanctioning funds for Bhadrak-Dhamra road widening project taken up at an investment of around Rs 160 crore, said Srikant Jena, Union minister of state for statistics, programme implementation and chemicals & fertilizers.
“Union minister for rural development Jairam Ramesh has agreed to pursue the matter with the surface transport ministry, where the proposal of the Odisha government has been lying for some time. We will take steps to ensure speedy clearance of funds for the project,” Jena said here while inaugurating a rural sanitation programme .
The 82-km route is key to Dhamra port which is expected to carry a lot of iron ore traffic in the future. The road also connects to the missile launching centre of Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) at Chandipur near here, where Agni missile was test-fired recently.
Under the coastal road development project, the Central government provides 90 per cent of the fund for th project and the rest is borne by the state government. This scheme is meant for connecting major ports, minor ports and logistics parks.
Meanwhile, Jena took a dig at the state government’s delay in acquiring land for several private and government projects in Odisha. “It would be better if the state government starts acquiring land in advance in the Dhamra area so that when the funds gets released , the road widening process would begin soon,” the minister asserted.
Ramesh, who was also at Dhamra to inaugurate the village sanitation project, said his ministry and DRDO would sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) soon to introduce easily decomposing human waste toilets or bio-digesters in 1,000 gram panchayats.
“We have a mission to make 1,000 gram panchayats as “Nirmal panchayats” by introducing such toilets, which have been developed by DRDO. We have earmarked Rs 400 crore for the rural sanitation project,” he said.
Bio-Digester technology has been developed by DRDO at its Defence Research & Development Establishment- Gwalior and Defence Research Laboratory-Tezpur (Assam).
The process involves using a specialized bacteria imported from Antarctica, which consumes the faecal matter inside the tank, through anaerobic process and finally degrades the matter, releasing methane gas that can be used for cooking, along with the treated water.
For the rural sanitation programme, Bhubaneswar-based consulting firm- CTRAN Consulting has been providing technical advisory services. To commercialize its technologies, DRDO and industry body Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) have entered into an agreement, which will make available more than 250 technologies in the market.