Bhubaneswar: The 24th meeting of the Eastern Zonal Council, co1nprising of the States of Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha and West Bengal, is scheduled to be held on 28’h February, 2020 at Bhubaneswar.
Union Minister for Home Affairs, Shri Amit Shah will chair this meeting. Chief Minister of Odisha, Shri Naveen Patnaik, is the Vice-Chairman and host. Chief Ministers of Bihar, West Bengal and Jharkhand respectively, Shri Nitish Kumar, Ms. Mamata Banerjee and Shri Hemant Soren, will also participate. The Chief Ministers will be accon1panied by two Cabinet Ministers fro1n each State, as me1nbers of the Council, and Chief Secretary & other senior officers of the States. Secretaries/Additional Secretaries and other senior officers of the Central Government will also attend the 1neeting. Last meeting of the Eastern Zonal Council was last he ld in Kolkata on October I , 2018.
The upcoming meeting of the Eastern Zonal Council will deliberate upon nearly 4 dozen issues which inter alia include inter-State water issues, power transmission lines, royalty on & operationalization of coals mines, land & forest clearance of rail projects, investigation of heinous offences, cattle smuggling across country ‘s borders, lack of telecom & banking infrastructure in remote areas, petroleum projects, sharing pattern on centrally collected revenues etc. With such senior level participation of political leadership and officers, a large number of issues are likely to get resolved by consensus in the meeting.
Issues likely to be taken up are Development or disaster-resilient infra, expeditious implementation of rail link projects, smooth operation of coal mines, financial inclusion, grants to PRIs/ULBs under 15th FC, devolution of powers to panchayat bodies & revision of coal royalty,Effective implementation of direct benefit transfer in various schemes, telecom & internet connectivity, use of Aadhaar data base, timely release of central grants & LWE situation.