Surprised by Andhra Pradesh on more than one occasion, the Koraput administration is not taking any chances to woo tribal residents of disputed Kotia panchayat in Pottangi block.
In a bid to checkmate their Andhra counterparts, the officials have allotted a house under Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) to Hantal Erama of Neridivalsa village in the panchayat within just 24 hours after her thatched dwelling was destroyed due to heavy rains and wind on Friday night. Erama had lost her house after a tree fell on it due to heavy downpour.
As soon as the news spread, the district Collector ordered the Pottangi block office and Revenue department to initiate immediate measures to provide relief to Erama.
After the damage was assessed by Pottangi tehsildar HP Mandal, the tribal whose poultry farm too was destroyed in the calamity, was given Rs 10,000 and a house allotted to her under PMAY.
“We swiftly responded to the victim’s plea and provided her financial assistance and allotted a house under PMAY as per norms,” said an emergency department official of Koraput adding the administration will also help Erama rebuild her poultry farm.
With officials of Andhra Pradesh and Odisha trying their best to woo the locals, several development projects have been started in the disputed panchayat.
The swift action by the Odisha officials assumes significance as Neradivalsa is just 3 km away from Andhra Pradesh and 70 km from Pottangi.
Sources said such swift action to provide relief to people hit by natural calamities in the panchayat is a first for Odisha.
While the neighbouring State has always hoodwinked Odisha, it is expected that Erama may have some more relief in store for her.