‘Ama Pokhari’ empowers 364 SHGs for rejuvenation of 95 waterbodies in Odisha

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Participants at the ‘Ama Pokhari’ event held in Bhubaneswar.

Bhubaneswar: A state-level event showcasing the “Ama Pokhari” initiative witnessed the signing of agreements and distribution of work orders to 364 Mission Shakti Self-Help Groups (SHGs) under the MUKTA programme for the ecological rejuvenation of 95 water bodies across 16 Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) in the state.

Minister of Housing & Urban Development, Usha Devi, attended the event as the chief guest, emphasising the significance of the “Ama Pokhari” initiative. She said, “This programme championed by chief minister Naveen Patnaik, is not only about reviving water bodies; but also a remarkable journey of empowerment, sustainability and community spirit.”

Also read: Water Quality Assurance Cell launched in Odisha

She also highlighted the pivotal role of Mission Shakti women in the initiative, calling them the heart of the programme. She urged them to become guardians, educate their communities and spread awareness about saving water bodies. The “Ama Pokhari” initiative, according to her, is about empowering women to earn, lead and shape their future.

Additional chief secretary of the Housing & Urban Development Department, G Mathivathanan, briefed on the progress of the initiative since its launch in July 2023. He emphasised how “Ama Pokhari” addresses women’s empowerment, environmental sustainability and urban infrastructure development, leveraging community partnership through Mission Shakti SHGs.

Dignitaries present at the event included minister for Social Security & Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, Science & Technology Dept Ashok Chandra Panda, MLA Ananta Narayan Jena and mayor of Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation, Sulochana Das. They emphasised the importance of “Ama Pokhari” in improving urban living standards and creating a new paradigm in community participation.

The event commenced with a welcome address by special secretary Sagarika Pattanaik, followed by a vote of thanks proposed by Rajesh Pravakar Patil, special secretary of H&UD and commissioner BMC.

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