Bhubaneswar: The Nabard Odisha region chief general manager (CGM), Dr.K.C.Panigrahi, Thursday said that Odisha is the number one state in the country so far as loans sanctioned under RIDF. He urged the Odisha government to maintain that position in coming years keeping an eye on the development of the state.

Dr. Panigrahi, while delivering his keynote address at the state-level Planning and Senistization Workshop, organised by Nabard, here on Thursday,  said that the state finance department, planning and convergence department and all the implementing departments should cooperate with Nabard for execution of the RIDF projects in the state. He also elaborated the 36 eligible activities of RIDF and highlighted the state’s achievement of the last few years.

Odisha finance minister Shashi Bhusan Behera, development commissioner R Balakrishnan, finance principal secretary Tuhin Kanta Pandey also addressed the workshop.

The finance minister assured the Nabard CGM that Odisha would remain as number one state in the country so far as availing of RIDF loan. He urge the implementing departments and NABARD to work in close coordination so that the state will continue to take maximum benefit of RIDF loan.

The principal secretary finance, Pandey,  said due to effective project appraisal by NABARD, the execution of RIDF projects has become better. He said RIDF is the cheapest fund for the state government and any amount of assistance is welcome. He said effective project preparation, grounding, monitoring will bring in fruits of development to the rural people. He said Odisha government has set up many funds such as Mineral Development Fund pooling money from specific activities and using the same for development of rural areas. He also highlighted the importance of Long-Term Irrigation Fund (LTIF) and NABARD Infrastructure Development Assistance (NIDA) in the state.