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The administration in Ganjam district recently reviewed the infrastructure of villages situated along the Odisha-Andhra Pradesh border amid local media reports that people there are availing of benefits from the neighbouring state. Berhampur sub-collector Siddharth Shankar Swain along with senior officers visited the Tumba and Burutala panchayat villages, along the border, and interacted with the locals to find out about their needs and grievances, a senior administration official said. The people of Gudikhala, a village under Burutala panchayat in the district, were found to possess ration cards of both the states, the sub-collector noted. Several development projects are underway in the border villages and the situation will change for better once these are complete, he asserted. "We have taken note of the grievances of the local people and asked the officers to address them at the earliest," Swain said, adding that the district administration has allotted houses under Prime Minister Awas Yojana (PMAY) to the villagers. A recent report in an Odia newspaper said that the children, especially the ones who speak Telugu, prefer going to nearby schools in Andhra Pradesh. In Gudipadara village, most kids have taken admission in a primary school in Khajuria village of Andhra Pradesh, village head Y Mohan Rao said. "Not just Gudipadara, the children of nearby villages, too, cross borders to study in schools run by the Andhra Pradesh government,"he said. Asked about the education facilities in the area, Swain said the district administration will be setting up schools at Gudipadara and Ralaba villages in the area. "We will have to identify land for the schools.
Once the schools are up and running, we will convince people to stop sending their wards to Andhra Pradesh," he added.
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