Patnaik announces Rs 453cr Covid assistance for women self- help groups

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Bhubaneswar, Jul 16 (PTI) Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Friday announced a special package of Rs 453.50 crore as COVID assistance to women members of self-help groups under the State Mission Shakti.

Attending a meeting on a virtual platform, Patnaik said a Mission Shakti Bhawan will be constructed in each of the 338 block-level Mission Shakti associations.

These Bhawans will be used as training centres/ business centres by the women members of the Mission Shakti, he said.

Each block will get Rs 50 lakh for construction of the Bhawan, the chief minister said.

This apart, Rs 84.50 crore will be given for helping the members of the Mission Shakti in doing business and Rs 200 crore as interest subvention for repayment of loans, he said.

While lauding the works of Mission Shakti members during the pandemic, Patnaik said 'The women members looked after temporary medical camps, manufactured masks and created awareness among the people.' Expressing confidence in their abilities, the chief minister said, 'You go ahead, I am with you.

'Last year, the state government paid Rs 125 crore as interest rebates, but this year it has increased to Rs 200 crore,' he said.

In the last two years, goods and services worth Rs 2,800 crore have been procured from various self-help groups of Mission Shakti.

The state government has set a target to provide Rs 6,000 crore bank loans to Mission Shakti mothers for 2021-22.

The Mission Shakti programme was started by Patnaik in 2001, a year after he assumed power in the state.

It has played a vital role during a disaster or emergency, and has now become a movement in the state, Patnaik had earlier said. PTI AAM MM MM

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