In a bid to carry out development of tribals in Odisha, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has launched Special Development Councils (SDCs) in 14 more districts, officials said.
The new SDCs have been set up in the districts of Angul, Bolangir, Balasore, Bargarh, Boudh, Deogarh, Dhenkanal, Ganjam, Jajpur, Jharsuguda, Kalahandi, Nuapada, Nayagarh and Sambalpur.
Earlier, these were launched in nine districts.
The objective of the SDCs is to further conserve and ensure the socio-economic and cultural development of tribals of Odisha, the officials said.
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Around 80 lakh tribals in 172 blocks of these 14 districts will be benefited, they said.
The state government will spend Rs 273 crore for development of tribal culture, Patnaik said after the launch of SDCs on Sunday.
“The Jagannath culture, which is the most important contribution of Odisha to the world, is closely associated with the tribal way of life in the state,” he said.
Respect for nature and universal brotherhood are the foundations of tribal culture, the CM added.