Infosys plans for a 500 crore investment in Bhubaneswar

Akshay Patra Foundation, Bhubaneswar- Cuttack- Puri, HEALTHCARE and HOSPITALS, Indian majors, Infosys, IT, Khordha, TOI, Economic Times 2 Comments »

Following is an excerpt from a report in Economic Times.

IT major Infosys today said it would invest Rs 500 crore in Orissa for setting up an SEZ in IT and ITeS sectors and take care of children’s mid-day-meal scheme and healthcare services.

“We have proposed to set up an IT SEZ in Bhubaneswar. The project will require 50 acres of land”, T V Mohandas Pai, Director HR, ER and administration and member of board of Infosys, told reporters here.

… Pai who had been funding mid-day meal for 10,000 school children in Nayagarh district, also agreed to extend the programme to Gajapati and Kandhamal districts, official sources said. Besides, 30,000 children in Puri district were also getting midday meal in Puri district.

“We have been spending Rs 6.50 per child to provide quality food,” Pai said pointing out that Infosys had spent Rs 5.5 crore towards its corporate social responsibility.

Shetty, who had been providing health care service to BPO staff, urged Patnaik to allot five-seven acres of land in the city for setting up a 1,000-bed heart hospital.

As the city was gradually becoming a IT hub of Eastern India with almost all major players opening their development centres, employees required quality heath service, Shetty said.

“We have also requestedthe state government to help Shetty set up a heart hospital here”, Pai told reporters.

Simple water harvesting techniques for drought proof farming – a case study

AGRICULTURE & FARMING, PHILANTHROPY, SHG, DISTINGUISHED NGOS & FOUNDATIONS, Sambalpur, Water harvesting Comments Off on Simple water harvesting techniques for drought proof farming – a case study

Following is an excerpt on this from a report in New Indian Express.

The 10 decimal land covered with vegetable plants of different varieties is now a source of income for Hari Podh of Khamarbadmal village, 50 km from here. …

Today, traders wait at his farm to buy vegetables plucked straight from his field. This, apparently, is something new the village is witnessing. With no water source, vegetable cultivation was a dream for the villagers. But intervention by an NGO, Mass, changed it all.

Hari just had to invest Rs 4,000 for constructing a Chahala (a small water harvesting body dug at the lowest point of land) and this changed the condition of his land.

Hari’s not the lone case. Joseph Bage of the same village invested Rs 10,000 on his three acre land and constructed a traditional water harvesting body. Now, his land is completely drought-proof.

Earlier, Khamarbadmal was one among the drought-hit villages in the region. People had land but no food. Poor quality of land devoid of supplementary irrigation sources yielded no results.

However, inspired by Hari and Joseph, the villagers are now in the process of constructing a series of water harvesting structures which when completed, will make 80 per cent of cultivable area of their village totally drought-proof and open up income generating sources. Mass is providing the villagers financial support for the purpose.

They have planned a total of 22 water harvesting structures of different types, shapes and structures depending on their suitability.

Besides, they are taking up farm land improvement activities. They have already completed construction of six structures.

Mission Ashra rescues mentally challenged women from the streets and rehabilitates them: a Samaja story

Mission Ashra, Odisha NGOs, PHILANTHROPY, SHG, DISTINGUISHED NGOS & FOUNDATIONS, Websites of Interest Comments Off on Mission Ashra rescues mentally challenged women from the streets and rehabilitates them: a Samaja story

The Hindu also has an article on Mission Ashra. Ashra’s home page is here. It has many success stories.

Grain bank helps tribals in Koraput district

AGRICULTURE & FARMING, Grain banks, Koraput, PHILANTHROPY, SHG, DISTINGUISHED NGOS & FOUNDATIONS, RURAL & SPECIAL PROGRAMS Comments Off on Grain bank helps tribals in Koraput district

Business Standard reports on this. Following are some excerpts.

… When several other tribal families are taking loans from the middlemen to maintain their family, 42-year-old Bati has not approached the landlord for the last three years.

Instead, she is taking a loan of grain from the grain bank in her village with a nominal grain interest to maintain her seven-member family.

“Three years ago, we were forced to borrow from the money lender to maintain our family during the rains. The grain that we used to produce went into paying the money lender,” she said.

… “We have developed our grain bank with contribution from the villagers and with support of South Orissa Voluntary Action (SOVA), one of the leading NGOs in the district,” says Gopa Jani, the president of the village committee of Puki.

For setting up the grain bank, each and every household in the village contributed food grain, including paddy and maize. In addition, SOVA contributed an equal quantity to make it a corpus fund of food grain. The grain was stocked in the traditional way in bamboo baskets to protect from insects and managed by a village committee.

“A borrower has to pay an interest of two kg and one kg for 10 kg of maize and paddy, respectively,” says Jani. The loan is repaid by the borrower after harvesting. Puki village has 69 households with a population of 244, and no one now approaches the money lenders for loans, he said.

“The grain bank helps a lot during the lean period from July to September, when we do not get any work,”…

In his village, with 22 households, mostly Kandha tribals, people borrow grain mostly in the rains.

Since last three years, grain banks have been setup in 18 villages in three panchayats of two blocks including Koraput and Kunduru.

“About 928 households of these villages have benefited from the grain banks,” Sanjeet Patnaik, president, SOVA, said. “We are trying to setup more grain banks in coming years,” he added.

The tribal people in Koraput, generally practice podu (shifting cultivation) and collect minor forest produces. Koraput has about 50 per cent tribal population.

Akshay Patra Foundation expands outside Puri

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The Akshay Patra Foundation plans to expand outside Puri to other districts. New Indian Express reports on this. Following are some excerpts.

The Akshay Patra Foundation, which is engaged in providing nutritious food to schoolchildren in Puri district under the mid-day meal programme, is set to extend its service to all the government primary schools in other districts of the State.

In the immediate phase, the foundation has signed an MoU with Collector, Nayagarh, to provide food in the government primary schools of the district.

‘‘In fact, we have already started a strategic midday meal programme at Nayagarh and covered as many as 2,500 students in 16 schools there,’’ …. The Foundation started its operations in 2006 in Puri district.

Today, food is being supplied to over 33,000 children in 280 primary schools in the district. The food is prepared in line with local preference and in a mechanised kitchen, thereby ensuring proper hygiene.

The foundation is also working with the State Government to train SHG women to cook and provide food to schools. The entire process is monitored by foundation though. The move has created an opportunity for the SHGs to be economically empowered, Dasa said.