Meramandali: Tata Steel BSL, formerly known as Bhushan Steel Limited, has started a pilot project on kitchen garden in two villages near its plant at Kantabani in Hindol block of Dhenkanal district. Launched as part of the Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives of the steel major, it has evoked good response from the farmers.
The project was inaugurated by Shri Pankaj Pradhan, Sarpanch of Kusupanga Grama Panchayat, in presence of Shri Ashutosh Das, Senior Manager, CSR and other officials of Tata Steel BSL and villagers.
Thirty two farmers from both the villages – Kusupanga and Kurunti under Kusupanga Panchayat were provided vegetable seeds for backyard kitchen garden. The farmers expressed keenness to grow vegetable on a commercial scale. They will be monitored by the CSR team of the company. Along with ensuring an inexpensive, regular and handy supply of fresh vegetables which are basic to nutrition, the kitchen garden will also provide an additional source of income to the families.
Commending Tata Steel BSL for the initiative Shri Pankaj Pradhan said, “we are happy as many of the villagers can sustain themselves through these kinds of initiatives.”
Earlier in November Tata Steel BSL had conducted a two-day long training camp on vegetable cultivation and mushroom farming for farmers from Kurunti and Kusupanga villages under the guidance of Shri Bhagawan Das, Deputy Director, Horticulture, Dhenkanal district and Shri Ajay Prusti, noted entrepreneur on mushroom farming. If proved successful similar kitchen garden projects will be taken up in other nearby villages.
With an aim to promote inclusive growth in the area, since the takeover of the then Bhushan Steel in May 2018, Tata Steel has started work on two model schools at a cost of Rs 10 crore in Dhenkanal district. Besides a mobile primary health care unit is serving around 11,000 villagers around the plant while a 7km long cement concrete road is being constructed to connect 8 villages to NH 55 at a cost of Rs 6.11 crores.