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Signboard in Odia mandatory for shops in Odisha

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Bhubaneswar: In a significant decision Odisha Cabinet today approved a proposal making it mandatory for shops and commercial establishments in the State to display signboards in Odia.

“It will be mandatory for every shop and commercial establishment in the State to display a signboard prominently written in Odia. However, they will be free to write in any other language or languages in addition to this,” informed Chief Secretary A P Padhi briefing reporters after today’s Cabinet meeting.

Violation of it will be treated as an offence and heavy penalty will be imposed on the violator.

“Violation will be treated as offence. In first instance, the offender will be liable for paying fine ranging from Rs1,000 to Rs5,000 in the court of a judicial magistrate. In the event of second offence, the fine amount will range between Rs2,000 to Rs 25,000,” he added.

The proposal will come into force after the Orissa Shops and Establishments Act is amended by the State Assembly, the Chief Secretary clarified while adding that a grace period of one month will be allowed for compliance.

The Cabinet approved the Universal Eye Health Programme on affordable eyecare services in rural and tribal areas by making available skilled manpower and equipment.

It also aims to generate a baseline data on the prevalence of eye diseases in the state through a sample survey. All backlog cataract cases will be addressed by 2023.

The scheme will also have provision for adequate eyecare infrastructure in medical colleges, district and sub-divisional hospitals, and community health centres.

The programme will be implemented from 2018-19 to 2022-23.

The Cabinet also approved universal coverage of water supply in urban areas by 2018-19.

The Housing and Urban Development Department has prepared an action plan for urban water supply to achieve the universal coverage of all wards of 114 Urban Local Bodies by the end of 2018-19, an official statement said.

The water supply programme will be implemented by leveraging funds from the Atal Mission for Rejuvenation and Urban Transformation, District Mineral Fund, grants from the 4th State Finance Commission and Urban Water Supply Programme under state.

The Cabinet also approved a sub-scheme Biju Yuva Vahini under Biju Yuva Sashaktikaran Yojana to reach out to youths at the grass-roots level and goad them for youth-led social action and community engagement activities.

In total the Cabinet approved 17 proposals.(with IANS inputs)