The 67th Republic Day was celebrated across Odisha with enthusiasm amid tight security, with the state government promising to unveil a new startup programme to infuse entrepreneurship among the youth and step up employment generation.
Governor S C Jamir unfurled the national tricolour at the main function on the Mahatma Gandhi Road in the state capital, while Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik hoisted the national flag at the historic Barabati stadium in Cuttack.
After taking a salute at an impressive parade at the stadium, Patnaik said the state government is taking steps for creation of more employment opportunities. New schemes and a startup policy will soon be launched to inculcate entrepreneurship among youth, he said.
Noting that Odisha has carved a unique identity and emerged as a model state in the field of social security, Patnaik said the state government was working with commitment and dedication for successful implementation of National Food Security Act (NFSA).
Asserting that Odisha has been able to achieve an impressive economic growth rate which is higher than the national average, the chief minister said the state is making tremendous progress in education, industrial activities and infrastructure development.
The government, he said, is taking concrete steps for development of agriculture, well being of farmers, empowerment of women, progress in backward areas and elevation of the status of people belonging to SC and ST.
Hailing patriarch Biju Patnaik as a pride of the state, the chief minister said elaborate arrangements would be made to celebrate Bijubabu's birth centenary in a befitting manner in the state and elsewhere. In the capital, the Governor took salute at an impressive parade amid tight security as colourful tableaux and cultural pageants displayed the state's rich culture and progress made in different sectors.
In view of threat perception and boycott call given by Maoists, a high alert had been sounded in all the districts. On the basis of information received from IB and different agencies, all districts, airports, railway stations and bus-stands were alerted, according to Director General of Police (DGP) K B Singh.
Tight security arrangements had been made in Maoist- affected districts like Malkangiri, Rayagada, Koraput, Kandhamal and Gajapati. In some areas like Rayagada, Naxals had pasted posters asking people to observe black day and boycott celebrations. The celebrations remained peaceful all over the state.