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Keonjhar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Monday said that farmers, women and youth are the trinity of the state.

He said, addressing a function in Keonjhar to inaugurate Dharanidhar Medical College & Hospital and launch several development projects, that they are the leaders of the progress of the State and will play an important role in fulfilling the dream of a developed Odisha. Secretary to CM V K Pandian graced the occasion.

The Chief Minister asked the students and the members from the public whether they were happy.

The gathering enthusiastically responded with a loud ‘yes’.

Later, the Chief Minister announced the upgradation of the Dharanidhar College to a university.

The Chief Minister said that the infrastructure for a medical college and a cancer treatment center and a nursing college in Keonjhar will be started soon.

“This will eliminate the shortage of doctors and better quality medical facilities will be available in the district and the people of the district will no longer have to go to Cuttack-Bhubaneswar,” the Chief Minister said.

With the launching of the long-awaited medical institution, people of the district will avail advanced healthcare services in the state-run hospital under the 5T programme of the Odisha government.

Set up over an area of 44 acres at an investment of Rs 480 crore, the medical college presently has 22 departments with a strength of 55 teaching faculties and 28 senior residents and tutors.

A total of 100 students from various states including Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Odisha have been admitted to the Dharanidhar Medical College in the first batch for the academic session 2022-23.

Stating that all lives were precious to him, Patnaik said that the health care services of the state are being developed rapidly.

“Over 8, 30, 773 people have benefited through the Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana, while more than Rs 1820 crore has been spent for I,” the Chief Minister said.

He said that only in Keonjhar, 24,000 people have benefited and more than Rs 47 crore spent on health care of people.

On this occasion, the Chief Minister launched 259 projects worth Rs 4703 crore for Keonjhar.

Among these are  138 projects which have been given funds to the tune of Rs 1103 crore for infrastructure development, 98 projects worth Rs 868 crore inaugurated and 23 new projects worth Rs 2731 crore.

While formally inaugurating the new medical college and hospital named after noted tribal freedom fighter Dharanidhar at the district headquarters here, Shri Patnaik said a new cancer centre and a nursing college would also come up along with the medical college.

 Spread over an area of 44 acres and built at a cost of Rs 480 crore, the medical college presently has 22 departments with a strength of 55 faculty members and 28 senior residents and tutors.

 A total of 100 students from across India have enrolled for the first batch of 2022-23 academic session.

 He said that with the inauguration of Dharanidhar Medical College and Hospital, people of the district will be able to avail advanced healthcare services in the state-run facility and will not have to visit Bhubaneswar or Cuttack for treatment anymore.

The CM also inaugurated the Dharanidhar Sports Complex, which has a natural turf football ground, a 400-metre synthetic track equipped with LED floodlights and a 1,000-people gallery.

Additionally, an archery arena has also been developed. The complex also has an indoor hall with six badminton courts and a 200-bed residential facility. The campus is spread over nine acres of land and has been developed at a cost of over Rs 35 crore.

Patnaik, who attended a function here, also handed over financial assistance of Rs 378 crore in the form of interest-free loans to 14,372 women self-help groups (SHGs) under Mission Shakti in the district.

Notably, 1.60 lakh women have become self-reliant through 14,372 Mission Shakti groups in the district. For them, the Chief Minister has arranged an interest-free loan of Rs 378 crore.

The Chief Minister gave a loan check of Rs. 20 lakhs to the Banpushap self-help group of Bashanpal and an interest rebate of Rs. 25,757 to the Vijaya self-help group of Ghashipura.

On this occasion, the Chief Minister said that the women of Mission Shakti have enhanced the reputation of the State.

Shri Patnaik expressed the hope that by doing good business, they will contribute significantly to the economic development of themselves, their families and their region.

In the beginning, the Chief Minister exchanged ideas with the students in the auditorium of the New Medical College.

Finance & Health Minister Niranchan Pujari, Keonjhar MP Chandrani Murmu, Ghashipura MLA Badri Narayan Patra, Keonjhar MLA Mohan Charan Majhi, Anandpur MLA Bhagirathi Sethi, Telkoi MLA Premanand Naik, Champua MLA Meenakshi Mohant, Keonjhar District Planning  Committee Chairman Jagannath Nayak, District Council Chairperson Sagarika Sahu were among those who attended the function.