Odisha Government Unveils 33 Buses for Remote Malkangiri District

Odisha Government Unveils 33 Buses for Remote Malkangiri District
Odisha Government Unveils 33 Buses for Remote Malkangiri District
Odisha Government Unveils 33 Buses for Remote Malkangiri District
Odisha Government Unveils 33 Buses for Remote Malkangiri District

Odisha Government Unveils 33 Buses for Remote Malkangiri District

Odisha Government Unveils 33 Buses for Remote Malkangiri District

Odisha Government Unveils 33 Buses for Remote Malkangiri District

In a groundbreaking move, the Odisha government introduced 33 buses, including six air-conditioned ones, to operate in the Maoist-affected Malkangiri district. This initiative is a significant step towards enhancing connectivity and development in a region that has grappled with violence for decades.

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik marked the commencement of the first phase of buses under the Location Accessible Multimodal Initiative (LAccMI) scheme in Malkangiri. Patnaik emphasized the vital role of these buses in connecting far-flung areas of the state and the district. He stressed that communication is the cornerstone of development and the LAccMI scheme would facilitate connectivity to foster development across the region.

Extending Bus Services to Remote Communities

In the inaugural phase, 33 buses, including six air-conditioned ones, will connect all 111 gram panchayats in the district, bringing bus services to 80 of them for the first time. The non-AC buses will establish connections between gram panchayats and block headquarters, while the AC buses will link block headquarters to the district headquarters. To ensure comprehensive connectivity, the Malkangiri district administration has also arranged for autorickshaws to connect villages with gram panchayat headquarters under the scheme.

This move carries significant implications for the region. Malkangiri had long been considered a Maoist stronghold, and the deployment of new buses is seen as a positive step on multiple fronts. It not only enhances the government’s image but also dispels Maoist propaganda about government neglect, thereby reducing the governance deficit. Experts also view the presence of these new buses as a powerful symbol of governance in Maoist-affected areas.

Future Expansion and Affordable Travel

The government intends to extend this bus service to five other Maoist-affected districts, including Rayagada, Kalahandi, Nabarangpur, Koraput, and Gajapati. Over the next ten years, more than 1,000 buses will be operational throughout the state under this scheme. Furthermore, the tickets for these buses will be at least 20% cheaper than private buses, making travel more affordable for the residents of Malkangiri and the surrounding regions.

The government’s commitment to providing better transportation services to remote areas, its success in mitigating private operators’ protests, and the potential to bring about positive change in Maoist-affected districts reflect a significant stride in Odisha’s efforts to boost connectivity and development.

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