Tag Archives: administration

“In a Comeback Churn”

“In a Comeback Churn”

Satyabrata Sahu, IAS

Satyabrata Sahu, 1991 batch IAS officer and incumbent principal secretary of MSME department has been given additional charge of a school & mass education department in the latest bureaucratic rejig effected by the Naveen Patnaik government.

Last month, Sahu after his comeback from central deputation was assigned the charge of the MSME department. He had been serving as the Director (administration & finance) in the National Highways Infrastructure Development Corporation (NHIDC). The post was equivalent to the rank of a joint secretary in the Union cadre.

NHIDC is scaling up construction of roads and bridges in the far-flung North East and difficult zones of the country.

Sahu continued in this post till June 2020. Prior to this central assignment, he had served as the Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation.

His central deputation tenure was extended by two years.

As the MSME secretary cum Managing Director of Odisha Small Industries Corporation (OSIC), he has rolled out a string of reforms. OSIC has planned to boost up its business to Rs 1000 crore by the end of this financial year. 

It has been emphasized that the Energy Department shall be contacted to award orders to OSIC for electrification work and supply of equipment, solar power equipment, solar power stations, solar pumps etc. in order to enhance its business activities.

In order to stretch out, the corporation has decided to open six new sales counters at Jeypore, Jharsuguda, Berhampur, Koraput, Boudh and Phulbani (Kandhamal). These sale counters shall market various products manufactured by the MSME units of the state.

Article Written By Dibyajit Sahu

Image Source: Google

“The Nerve of Steel”

“The Nerve of Steel”

Surendra Kumar, IAS

Surendra Kumar, a 1993 batch IAS officer has been anointed as the Principal Secretary of steel & mines department. Additionally, Kumar will also be heading the Cuttack Development Authority (CDA). Kumar, an amiable and media-savvy officer replaces RK Sharma, Additional Chief Secretary who has been posted as Agriculture Production Commissioner.

Kumar is going to helm the steel & mines department at a very critical juncture. Post the successful online auctions of 24 merchant mines, the leases are now ready to commence production.

The restart of mining activity at these non-captive leases after a hiatus of approximately four months augurs well for the state coffers. Odisha has been finding resource mobilisation profoundly challenging in the aftermath of the pandemic.

Mining is the single largest contributor to the state’s non-tax revenue kitty. In the last fiscal, the state government garnered in upwards of Rs 10,000 crore by way of mining revenue.

Besides recommencement of operations at merchant mines, Odisha had lined up nine virgin leases for auctions. Kumar needs to oversee the process and hasten them to bolster revenues for the state government in the longer term. That apart, his vision and ample bureaucratic experience are also expected to come in handy for implementation of Ease of Doing Business Reforms in the mining sector.

These state-specific sectoral reforms are necessary for Odisha to avail borrowing beyond the mandated fiscal deficit levels. The central government has allowed states to stretch fiscal deficit limits and avail borrowing limit of up to five per cent of their respective Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP). But this is contingent on states rolling out their own suite of reforms.

Kumar in his earlier avatars as the secretary of information & public relations (I&PR) and water resources department has earned his stripes as a dynamic and result oriented officer.

In his capacity as I&PR secretary, Kumar had played a stellar role in facilitating communication between ministers and media persons during performance appraisal of departments.

Article Written By Dibyajit Sahu

Image Source: Google

Rajasthan Verdict On Sachin Pilot: 5 major issues will be addressed

Rajasthan Verdict On Sachin Pilot: 5 major issues will be addressed

In Rajasthan, the Sachin Pilot-led Congress party has already enquired the Supreme Court to contemplate its requisition so that no court can scrutinize or intervene before the Speaker of the House has taken the verdict. The case against the Congress party has strived to nullify & aims to disqualify Pilot and 18 other MLAs from the legislature.

The Rajasthan High Court today vetoed any prosecution against him for now. It has not inferred when it will hear the case. In this case, Congress disagrees, the Speaker has not yet agreed on whether he will move to disqualify Team Pilot. He has only solicited them to clarify why they violated party orders to head meetings chaired by Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot who was Pilot’s boss till newly.

The five crucial points that the Rajasthan High Court will address in its verdict on the Congress vs Sachin Pilot:

Congress holds that Pilot has violated anti-defection laws. But is dissent or strong opinions expressed against the party outside the Assembly, a sign of a legislator having switched sides?

Do existing anti-defection laws, meant to curb horse-trading, encroach upon freedom of expression?

Does the Speaker’s action of sending notices to Team Pilot, asking them to explain why they should not be disqualified, violate the essence of democracy by seeking to “throttle dissent against those in power”?  

Does criticising the Chief Minister amount to voluntarily giving up membership of a political party?

Does the Supreme Court ruling in 1992, which looked at the powers of the Speaker in deciding disputes over defection, address dissent within a party as well?  And can the High Court review these issues, listed above, despite the decades-old verdict of the top court? 

It will be pretty interesting to see how the political events unfold in the days to come and who will have an edge over the other.

By- JP Sahu
CM announced Free Distribution of Rice and Dal: Under The State Food Security Schemes

CM announced Free Distribution of Rice and Dal: Under The State Food Security Schemes

With the difficult situation facing by the poor people due to the lockdown, where they are striving to get the basic necessity, the Odisha Government announced to distribute free of cost rice and pulses from July to November. This will be allocated to the beneficiaries under the State Food Security Schemes (SFSS).

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik took this decision at a review meeting presided in the view of Coronavirus pandemic. According to the officials, the free rations will be distributed for 5 months i.e.; till November.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik

The COVID-19 outbreak has adversely affected the livelihood of people especially the poor.  Under the food security scheme, the Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Department will provide 5kg of rice and 1kg of Dal per head of the SFSS for five months for free of cost.

Lakhs of people excluded from the National Food Security Act will be benefited from the state government’s decision Even in Keonjhar the district administration also decided to distribute free uniforms, textbooks, and MDM ( Mid-day Meal) to all the students of class 9 and class 10.

This is for the state-run schools and aided schools in the tribal-dominated district. According to the officials, the facilities will be provided to the students from this academic year under the District Mineral Foundation (DMF).

Article Written By Dikhya Mohanty

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PM MODI ADDRESSES THE UNITED NATIONS ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL (ECOSOC)

Prime Minister NARENDRA MODI’s first speech at the UN after INDIA’S election to the security council on June 17, with 184 votes out of the total 192 polled, India won the UN non-permanent seat for the eighth time.

MODI lauding India’s health care system in dealing with the spread of COVID-19 credited the “grass-root health system” in helping the country ensure that one of the best recovery rates in the world.

He said, “We are also on track to remove TB by 2025”. Also said earthquakes, cyclones, Ebola crisis, or any other natural or man-made crisis, INDIA has responded with speed and solidarity. In our joint fight against COVID, we have extended medical and other assistance to over 150 countries.

He further said, “our motto is SABKA SAATH, SABKA VISHWAS – meaning ‘together, for everyone’s growth, with everyone resonates with the core SDG principle of leaving no one behind.”

Also, he delivered the keynote address at the High-Level segment of ECOSOC (Economic and Social Council), the Prime Minister spoke at the valedictory session along with his Norwegian counterpart Erna Solberg and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

India is home to one-sixth of humanity. We are mindful of our weight and responsibility. We know that if India succeeds in achieving its development objectives, it will go a long way in the achievement of global goals.

INDIA contributed to shaping the ECOSOC agenda; India was among the 50 founding members of the UNITED NATION immediately after the Second World War. A lot has changed since then from the very beginning; India has actively supported the UN’s development work and ECOSOC. The first president of ECOSOC was an INDIAN. India is also contributed to shaping the agenda of ECOSOC.

The theme of this year’s High-level segment is ‘Multilateralism’ after COVID-19, what kind of UN do we need at the 75th anniversary.

“Against the backdrop of a changing international environment and the unfolding COVID-19, the session will focus on critical forces shaping the course of multilateralism and explore ways to bolster the multilateral agenda through strong multilateral leadership, effective international institutions, a broadening of participation and an enhanced focus on global public goods’’, the permanent mission of INDIA to the UN said in a statement.

This year’s theme also resonates with India’s priority for its security council tenure in which NEW DELHI has called for reformed multilateralism in a post-COVID-19 world.

Article Written By SOMANATH SAHU

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Odisha to ease production norms for merchant mines

Odisha to ease production norms for merchant mines

The Odisha government is looking to relax production targets for merchant mines that are gearing up to recommence operations after online auctions.

At the time of online auctions, Rules mandated that the new leaseholders need to produce at least 80 per cent of the average output achieved by the previous lessee. This clause was designed to ensure the new mine owners achieved production at an optimal level and no artificial shortage of ore is created.

However, the outbreak and rampant spread of Covid-19 pandemic have played spoilsport to seamless operations of the merchant owned blocks. Resumption of mining activity has been delayed as the government paperwork and formalities consumed time in view of the lockdown imposed to check the spread of the pandemic.

“We are going to ease the production targets initially set for the auctioned merchant blocks. But miners have already lost nearly four months of their production schedule since April this year. The revised production terms will be commensurate with the time lapsed in restarting mines”, said an Odisha government official.

The Odisha mines department had auctioned 24 merchant blocks endowed with deposits of iron ore, manganese and chrome ore. The lease validity of all these non-captive blocks ceased on March 31, 2020, as per the revised Mines and Minerals- Development & Regulation (MMDR) Act, 2015.

Seventeen (17) out of the 24 blocks have already inked mining lease deeds while a few amongst them have begun trial production.

Online auctions of merchant blocks in Odisha had evoked a resounding response. The average bids for the blocks stood at 104 per cent. While Tata Steel retained its Sukinda chromite lease, its fully owned subsidiary TS Alloys (now Tata Steel Mining Ltd) emerged as the successful bidder for three chromite resources- Sukinda, Saruabil and Kamarda.

Almost all the iron ore leases barring one held by Serajuddin will change hands. Sajjan Jindal led JSW Steel had turned out to be the key disruptor at electronic auctions in Odisha, bagging four mines with aggressive price bids. Global steel behemoth ArcelorMittal won the Thakurani mine formerly held by Kaypee Enterprises.

The reopening of the merchant mine blocks is also expected to shore up revenues for the state government. During April-May, the state has barely been able to garner around Rs 700 crore of mining revenue as collections have tanked considerably after the Covid outbreak. In FY20, Odisha collected mining revenue in upwards of Rs 10,000 crore.

Article Written By Dibyajit Sahu

Image Source: Google

Skill, Re-skill, Up-skill

Skill, Re-skill, Up-skill

Our Honourable Prime Minister, Narendra Modi confessed that it is very crucial to dwell relevant to this existing juncture so that people can not only earn their livelihoods but also support and encourage others too.

On Wednesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi stated that the Coronavirus pandemic has exemplified new challenges for the globe which everyone requires to be formulated for. Lecturing a digital conclave on World Youth Skills Day, PM Modi illustrated a new mantra for you they’re a chair from a piece of wood.

“By structuring, you heightened the value of the wood by doing some value addition, and to keep up relevant, you need to keep adding stuff to it. Most importantly, you also should aim to intensify our dexterity further. This is known as up skilling,” PM Modi said.

It’s not purely that youth has to do but anyone can tread the pathlearn new stuff and keep enriching their skills. “This will help them to make themselves self-reliant,” In many fields, people who have skills, especially in the health services sector are the most required ones now.

This day marks the fifth anniversary of the launch of Skill India Mission. Which has been organized for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship?

On July 15, the United Nation organized an event WYSD which is celebrated every year. It was designated by the General Assembly (UNGA) in 2014. For this year 2020, the event is focused on the implication of nurturing proficient youth.

Article Written By JP Sahu

Image Source: Google

Construction Of Pedestrian Underpass and Foot Over Bridge In Balasore Gets Approved From Union Transport Ministry

Construction Of Pedestrian Underpass and Foot Over Bridge In Balasore Gets Approved From Union Transport Ministry

The Union Transport Ministry has approved the pedestrian underpass on the Bhadrak-Balasore National Highway-16 at Goudani Pokhari and culvert at Agria village under Balasore-Baripada-Jharpokharia section of NH-18.

Pratap Sarangi shared the information in his Twitter handle, “Profoundly thank Road Transport & Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari for considering my requests and approving a pedestrian underpass having crossroads in village Goudani Pokhari on Bhadrak- Balasore section of NH 16. He also approved in principle a foot over the bridge for pedestrian traffic and culvert for drainage improvement at Agria village under Balasore- Baripada- Jharpokharia section of NH- 18.”

He even expressed his appreciation by thanking Road Transport & Highway Minister Nitin Gadkari for granting his request and approving the projects for having a Pedestrian Underpass having crossroads in Village Goudani Pokhari on Bhadrak- Balasore section of NH 16.

The Minister further stated “I have got the matter examined and wish to intimate you that the village Gaudani Pokhari is located at KM.180.450 on Bhadrak-Balasore section of NH-16, the widening to 6-laning of which is already awarded to M/s. Brij Gopal Construction Co. Pvt. Ltd. on Hybrid Annuity Mode. I am glad to inform you that a Pedestrian Underpass (PUP) of size 12 m x 3.50 m has been approved at Km.180.450 having crossroad in village Goudani Pokhari under Change of Scope,”

Article Written By Dikhya Mohanty

Image Source: Google

Rayagada Admin Suspends public Transportation

Rayagada Admin Suspends public Transportation

Source: Google

By JP Sahu

Mr Promod Ku. Behera, DM Rayagada

The unconditional controversy raise day to day in Rayagada, due to persisting aspire on Covid19 cases in the District. The District administration keeping everything in sight has taken a decision to Suspend all public transport services to Ganjam, Cuttack, Bhubaneswar on Thursday till next order. The DM of Rayagarh Mr Promod Ku. Behera has also asked for stringent actions if anyone violates the norms in this regard. 

The administration urgently petitioned people of Rayagada for modest conspiracy. Anybody visiting Rayagada from other districts needs to register their name and prior approval of district magistrate.

If any person lay the first stone to infringe the norms and jeopardizing the community will be put into institutional quarantine for a minimum of seven days.

Even those who travel on a day-to-day basis, Government officials, contractual employees including private employees need to prior authorization from the Collector processed through PD, DRDA cum COVID Nodal officer via email only.

Earning Her Stripes, Baisali Mohanty

Earning Her Stripes, Baisali Mohanty

Source: Google

By Subhojit Panda

Amid all the chaos around COVID-19, an Odia girl has brought laurels for the state. Baisali Mohanty was recently appointed as United Nations Policy Officer, a first for the state. She took charge of her new assignment on July 1, 2020.

Her responsibilities include providing advice and inputs on inter-agency policies and ensuring implementation and compliance, tracking the implementation of initiatives and reporting on progress along with identifying the challenges, reviewing and analysing issues and trends and undertaking survey initiatives among others.

In her reaction, she says, “I am touched by the love and adulation that I am receiving from all quarters. I thank my parents and all those people who have encouraged and supported me throughout. It is definitely a huge responsibility and I hope I will live up to everybody’s expectations.”

Born in the holy town of Puri, Baisali completed her schooling at Blessed Sacrament High School in Puri and KIIT International School in Bhubaneswar. She then finished her graduation from Lady Sriram College, Delhi followed by a Master’s Degree in International Studies from Oxford University in 2016.

Earlier, she made the state and country proud by winning the prestigious High Profile Achievement Award as the best graduate school at Oxford University, England and was selected to join the prestigious International Civil Service of United Nations, the world’s most prestigious civil service. Her dissertation on ‘Nuclear Diplomacy’ was highly praised.

From early 2018, she has been serving as the OIM officer in the UN Mission for the Rohingyas at the coastal town of Cox’s Bazar on Myanmar-Bangladesh border where over 10 lakh Rohingya refugees are taking care-of by the United Nations in the world’s largest refugee camp.

That apart, Baisali is also an acclaimed Odissi dancer. Trained by the legendary Odissi Guru Gangadhar Pradhan, she has been performing solo and group choreographies with her own dance company ‘Baisali Mohanty & Troupe’ in international and national festivals for over fifteen years.

She founded the ‘Oxford Odissi Centre’ that is extensively involved in the promotion and training of Odissi dance and Odia culture at Oxford University and other leading universities in England. Also, she is the brain behind Oxford Odissi Festival, a first-of-its-kind annual Indian classical dance festival at the University of Oxford by Oxford Odissi Centre.

She is the daughter of former chief engineer and IIT Alumnus Radhabinod Mohanty and eminent women rights activist and writer Mansi Pradhan. Baisali has been a regular writer on foreign policy and security issues in several prestigious international publications.

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik also took to Twitter and congratulated Baisali for the exceptional feat.