COVID-19: Sarpanchs continue to have powers of district Collectors, says Odisha CM 


Bhubaneswar, May 17: Sarpanchs continue to have the powers of district Collectors in enforcing lockdown in the State, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said at the all-party meeting convened by Odisha Assembly Speaker Surjya Narayan Patro on Monday.

The meeting was conducted through digital platform.

“Sarpanchs continue to have the powers of district collectors in enforcing lockdown etc. and they are free to start TMCs based on need and inflow of people from outside. To start with, the State has started functioning zonal TMCs as flow of people from outside is very less compared to last year,” said Patnaik.

The Chief Minister said that a three-month house-to-house survey (for Covid symptoms and co-morbid conditions) by ASHAs and AWWs will be launched beginning May 24, for which they will be given an additional incentive of Rs 1,000 per month for these three months.

“Gaon Kalyan Samitis are at the cutting edge of our outreach and they are there in almost every village. An amount of Rs 10,000 per GKS will be sanctioned for undertaking Covid related activities at village level involving the community.

As ASHAs monitor home isolation cases, they will be provided one time assistance of Rs 10,000 for bicycle, cupboard, slippers, umbrella and torch,” said Patanik.

Covid has devastated many families in the State. We intend to provide a healing touch to such Covid affected families by continuing to cover the widows and orphan children under the Madhubabu Pension Yojana. The children will also get free education facilities, said Patnaik.

To further strengthen the oxygen management and to prepare a Master plan for the State, I am announcing a Taskforce that will look at immediate needs as well as holistic planning for future exigencies, informed Patanik.

“We are also increasing our Medical manpower. We have recruited 786 doctors and 5137 paramedics and this will strengthen our fight. We are in the process of contractual recruitment of more medical personnel,” said Patnaik.

The Chief Minister also said that the Government will allow expenditure from MLALADS up to Rs 50 lakh for assisting in activities related to covid management, including procurement of masks from Mission Shakti groups to provide for poor people.

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