In a bid to encourage youth participation in sports, social work, and cultural activities and to make them active partners in the state’s development, the Odisha government has launched a new scheme under the Integrated Youth Development Programme (IYDP), reported Times of India.

As per the new scheme, the higher education department will offer special grants to degree colleges and state public universities under the IYDP for organising competitions among students in the fields of sports, social work-related activities, and cultural programmes. This new scheme calls for competitions and activities among students at the institutional level. According to the report, the education department also plans to organise district and state-level youth festivals in the future.

According to the qualifying requirements, having a student body of 100 to 150 would receive a grant of Rs 1.5 lakh. In addition to that, the department would provide grants of Rs 3 lakh to higher education institutes with student strength between 200 and 500. Similarly, colleges with 500-1000 students would receive Rs 4 lakh, institutions with 1000-2000 students would receive Rs 6 lakh, while institutions with more than 2000 students would receive Rs 9 lakh.

Higher education minister Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak in a high-level meeting held in the state on Friday said that 687 higher education institutions, including all government, government-aided colleges, and universities/colleges, are covered under the scheme.

Elaborating further, the minister further stated that the institutions will organise competitions among students from November 15 to December 31. Furthermore, the Sports and Youth Services Department has supplied funds and implementation guidelines to ensure the successful implementation of the scheme.

“The main objective of the scheme under the Integrated Youth Development Programme (IYDP) is to promote sports, social activities and cultural activities in the institutions. These activities will give a platform for youth to build their team spirit, leadership, and individual talents as well as connect them with the larger community,” the minister added.

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