Saturday, February 06, 2010

Formation of brigade battalion in Orissa sought

Express News Service
First Published : 05 Feb 2010 05:45:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 05 Feb 2010 08:21:32 AM IST

BHUBANESWAR: The State Government has proposed establishment of a brigade battalion of the Army in Orissa.
The proposal was discussed at the civil- military liaison conference cochaired by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and Lieutenant General JK Mohanty, GOC-in-C of central command.
The State Government has agreed to provide 1,600 acres of land at Balasore for setting up the battalion. The Defence Ministry will take a final decision in the matter.

The State Government is also prepared to provide land to the Army for establishment of its camps in Western and Southern Orissa. Chief secretary TK Mishra told mediapersons after the conference that the State Government is hopeful of establishment of the brigade battalion in Orissa. He said that the battalion of the territorial army at Bhubaneswar is not a full-fledged one.

The State Government also proposed that physical criteria for recruitment to the Army should be relaxed in case of youths from Southern Orissa who are mostly tribals. He hoped that the Defence Ministry will take a decision on the matter soon.
Lt Gen Mohanty said that opening of another sainik school in Western Orissa is under active consideration of the Army. The school will be set up either at Sambalpur or Bargarh. The Chief Secretary said that problems facing the sainik school at Bhubaneswar were discussed.

The State Government has agreed to provide necessary fund for repair of the school, he said. The proposal for opening of four more district sainik boards was discussed.
Opening of the boards in Keonjhar and Koraput districts has been finalised while a decision will be taken on opening of the boards in Bolangir and Sundargarh districts.
The Chief Secretary said that the State Government agreed to the proposal for providing land for polyclinics for Army personnel at Sambalpur, Puri, Angul, Koraput, Bhawanipatna and Dhenkanal. Now there are three polyclinis for the Army personnel at Bhubaneswar, Balasore and Berhampur.

The issue of acceptance of the model welfare package by the State to revise ex gratia payment for armed forces personnel who lay down their lives or get disabled due to injury in counter insurgency operations was discussed.

It was decided that the State Government will honour winners of gallantry and distinguished service awards on the Independence Day and the Republic Day. It was proposed that 3 per cent reservation for ex-servicemen in jobs should be increased by the State Government.

To a question, Lt Gen Mohanty said that the Army was ready to provide all assistance to the State Government to combat the Naxalites. He said that the Army had been training the police on improvised explosives device (IED).

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