Odisha is going to be the one of the biggest beneficiaries as World Bank has proposed 500 Million Dollar loan for 13 States including Odisha for strengthening their Dams on Reservoirs and Rivers.
It seems that Odisha is all set to take up massive improvement of 36 dam projects with a cost of nearly Rs.1000 Crore with World Bank support.
Under the Dam Rehabilitation and Improvement Project (DRIP) Phase II and III, Odisha will be implementing this huge Dam Improvement Project, thanks to the support of the Union Government.
While Odisha tops in the investment of funds in Water Resources Sector, it will be benefitted with the proposed funding by International Bank for Reconstruction and Development(IBRD), officials feel.
This will be the Second Dam Rehabilitation and Improvement Project (DRIP). DRIP Phase I is being implemented in Odisha and some other states with World Bank support.
While Odisha will be one of the biggest recipients of the World Bank loan, it will benefit the Stare’s dam structure, which requires improvement and rehabilitation.
State of Odisha, which has been implementing several World Bank supported programs in various sectors including Water Resources will be rehabilitating and improving several major, medium and minor dams.
World Bank Country Director, Junaid Kamal Ahmed has been very positive towards Odisha as the State last year organized Fifth International Dam Safety Conference, which widely deliberated the issues and challenges of Dam Safety and its requirement in the changed scenario.
The Second Dam Rehabilitation and Improvement Project will benefit, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Gujarat Punjab, Maharashtra and several other States.
Odisha Government has been increasing its investment in Water Resources sector and annually it has touched Rs.10,000 Crore Investment and is benefitting the Agriculture Sector in a big way.
Detailed discussion in this regard will take place on 20 May, where e-Conference will be held between the recipient States Union Government and World Bank.
Ministry of Finance is coordinating the entire exercise and State Government concerned will be presenting their cases, said sources.
While Department of Water Resources (DoWR) has taken up various milestones in this regard, more is needed to be done as per stipulations of World Bank.
Odisha implemented DRIP Phase I and rehabilitated 26 dams out of which 6 major, 14 medium and 6 are minor dams.
Major dams included Balimela, Hirakud, Rengali, ,Salandi and Upper Kolab and Satiguda.
With Upendra Prasad Singh at the helm of Ministry of Water Resources (MoWR) , as the Union Secretary, Odisha is getting lion’s share from DRIP, said sources.
While Odisha, which has 163 large dams is taking up all sorts of preparatory arrangements, Union Government has advised Odisha to take up the required criteria needed for clearance of the projects.
Mr.Singh, Secretary MoWR is in constant touch with the senior officials of the Odisha Government in Department of Water Resources (DoWR).
Principal Secretary Water Resources Surendra Kumar is coordinating the issues with MoWR, , while Principal Secretary Finance, Ashok Kumar Meena is in touch with Ministry of finance, sources said.