Has joining Odisha in 1947-48 cost Kalahandi ?

December 12, 2009 at 10:12 am Leave a comment

Following is a report from http://kalahandia.blogspot.com/:

  • Indravati Project in Kalahandi was sidelined by Government since 1948 till 1978, the irrigation project is only 40% completed by now. This is when Kalahandi district was the second largest food surplus district in Orissa as far as foodgrains are concerned (Ref: Turbulent five years or my humble contributions (II) 1962 – 66, P. K. Deo, Nov 1966, page 191) and the cost of generation of electricity per unit in this project was estimated cheapest in the country except Sharavati project (Ref: Turbulent five years or my humble contributions (II) 1962 – 66, P. K. Deo, Nov 1966, page 191). Imagine if Indravati Project would have been accomplished fully 30 years ago, nobody would have known infamous Kalahandi today. This is just due to political negligence towards Kalahandi.
  • Kalahandi district has been the second largest food surplus district in Orissa as far as foodgrains are concerned and it has supplied tons of rice during Bengal famine in 1942, but after joining Odisha it became one of the most backward district in the country.
  • Bhawanipatna has a history of thousand years, it is one of the oldest municipality in Odisha, but due to negligence no industrial and infrastructure growth could be brought after 1948. It is to be noted that before 1948, princely state Kalahandi had its own power plant, street light and a substantial agriculture growth. The initiation for Indravati Project was also made by princely Kalahandi state since 1939. The state had sent late Prof. (Er.) Bhubaneswar Behera to USA  specially to visualize for the interest of the princely state.
  • There was no approval of national highways, railways (except during British time) and higher education in the region utill very recently when NH201, NH217 and Lanjigarh road – Junagarh lines were approved, this too due to local MP initiatives.
  • All the developments in Kalahandi have come after a strong protest in the local level or by local MP such as Private medical college in Jaring (the fate is not sure after Saradar Raja was awarded imprisonment by Madras High Court for a murder case), Engineering and Agriculture Colleges, NH217, Khariar-Bhawanipatna world-bank road, Lanjigarh road – Junagarh railway line (a contribution by Bhakta Charan Das) etc.
  • Central University in Kalahandi was at the last moment betrayed by Odisha Government. Instead for 800 -1000 crore estimated project two colleges with a cost of 10 crore was given to Kalahandi by the Odisha Government
  • Unitary University status to Government College Bhawanipatna has not been fulfilled since past decade..
  • Even a state University demand in1987 and ealry 1990s were ignored by Biju Patnaik and subsequent Governments.
  • In last 10 years none of the major bridges in Kalahandi and Nuapda such as over Hati river near Junagarh, Kalamapur and Karchala, over Tel river near Gadiajor, Aatigaon and Uchhala, over Udanti river near Mahaling, etc could be accomplished whereas many flyovers and roads easily came in exsitence in Bhubaneswar area during this period.
  • KBK project was primarily made keeping Kalahandi in mind. But when any sort of regional KBK development comes Kalahandi is neglected despite being the center of KBK by Odisha Government. This includes  KBK administrative headquarter.
  • A proposed paper Mill in Kalahandi was later on shifted to another location in KBK.
  • Kalahandi received only normal grants, most of them from central Government.The state Government rarely played any major role in the region.
  • Though Kalahandi comes in Western Odisha (as per culture, language and University education) and South Odisha (as per administration, RDC, banking and primary education), this district (along with Nuapada) neither considered in the name of Western Odisha nor in the name of Southern Odisha. Most of the development in the Southern Odisha goes to Berhampur region whereas Western Odisha goes to Sambalpur or to some extent Rourkela region.

Entry filed under: History of Koshal, Kalahandi, Mugalbandi and Gadjat, Nuapada, Region watch.

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