JASHIPUR (Mayurbhanj): At least 1.5 lakh SHGs will be formed in the State in addition to the existing 5 lakh groups, said Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh here on Sunday.
The women SHGs in all Southern states have brought a ‘kranti’ and became self-reliant through such organisations. “Our next plan is to strengthen the groups in Odisha, Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan. We want at least one from each family become a member of a SHG,” he said.
Inaugurating the ITC-ORMAS-sponsored agarbatti unit at Sanapal under Jashipur block to support livelihood creation in rural areas, he urged the SHGs to do a professional job to usher in a sea change in their lives and society. “The women SHGs can play a vital role in strengthening the rural economy and transforming the villages,” he said.
He said non-timber forest produce especially cultivation and harvesting of bamboos should be handled by gram sabhas and not by the Forest Department.
He also inaugurated a perfume unit and packaging of incense sticks, marketed and managed by ITC Ltd and Odisha Rural Development and Marketing Society at Angargadia in Balasore.
Odisha Rural Development and Marketing Society chief V Rajsekharan said each member of the SHG can raise production from the existing 2 kg of agarbatti to 18 to 20 kg and substantially increase their earnings.