Bhubaneswar: The Odisha chief minister, Naveen Patnaik, Sunday announced that the State will have a separate department for Self-help Groups. He said that the name of the new department would be Mission Shakti.

Patnaik, while addressing a State-level function to observe the International Women’s Day, here on Sunday, said that his government is working for the upliftment and empowerment of women in the State. He said that Nutrition Budget, first of its kind in the country, when passed in the assembly would ensure eradication of nutrition deficit among the women and girl child.

There are 70 lakh SHGs working in Odisha.

The function, organised by the State Mission Shakti Directorate of the Women & Child Welfare Department, was addressed by WCD minister Tukuni Sahu, development commissioner Suresh Chandra Mohapatra, WCD principal secretary Anu Garg, advisor Mission Shakti Lopamudra Bauxipatra, advisor to WCD Sulata Deo, Women Commission chairperson Minati Behera, and Social Welfare director Aravind Agarwal.