Boost to WSHGs as Government Approves Rs 1000 Crore Business

Bhubaneswar: Keeping his election promise, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today, on the first day of assuming office, announced that the women self-help groups of the state will be provided government works worth one thousand crore rupees under the Mission Shakti Scheme.

The move assumes significance as the government took the decision on the very first day of office and the first cabinet meeting passing the resolution.

 The Chief Minister had made election promise to provide works worth Rs 5,000 crore per year to Mission Shakti workers if his party returns to power in the state. The WSHGs will be engaged in a number of different works that will bring them profits and make them self-reliant.

The works will include government business like paddy procurement, stitching of uniforms for children, preparation of hospital diet and manufacture of mosquito nets. They will also be given the work of preparing Mid Day Meal for the school children.

Along with this they will also be engaged in ashram school management, hospital management, tourism management, public distribution system. At present, the SHGs are providing dry food to anganwadi kendras, ICDS beneficiaries, pregnant women and malnutrition children.
The move of the government is surely going to add momentum to the already flourishing Self Help Group movement in Odisha.

In the last few years more than 70 lakh women of the state have benefited from the various schemes under the government’s Mission Shakti scheme. As an outcome of this, a paradigm shift has been seen in the rural areas where the economic parameters have changed and women have contributed to the development of their family. They are no longer dependent on the family income. It is also contributing to the rural economy is a significant way.

With the linkage of government works with self-help groups, the later will have a permanent and steady source of income. It will also lead to creation of rural women entrepreneurs in a cooperative manner. The ten government departments that will be entrusted to work closely with the SGHs include Women and Child Development, Mission Shakti, for supply of uniforms to anganwadi kendras, Food Supply and Public Distribution for paddy procurement and kerosene distribution, Agriculture and Farmer Empowerment for seed production.

The School and Mass Education department will ensure midday meal preparation work for the SHGs. The Fisheries and Animal husbandry Department will also be roped in so that the SHGs will be engaged in fish farming in village gram panchayat tanks.

The Health and Family Welfare Department will help the SGHs in providing sanitary napkins in schools and hospitals, food in hospitals and production of Mosquito nets that will be distributed to target families.

The members of the self-help groups will also be engaged in the maintenance of rural roads under the Rural Development department. The energy department will engage them in household electric meter reading.

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