Odisha state government has decided to develop five more beaches to secure the prestigious Blue Flag certification. The same was recently announced by state Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, in  a move to boost tourism in Odisha’s coastline areas.

Reportedly, Puri’s golden beach has already received the coveted certification. A first for Odisha, the Blue Flag tag, awarded by Copenhagen-based Foundation for Environmental Education (FEE), was received by the said beach on October 11 last year.

Referring to the development of five beaches, Mr Patnaik stated that the initiative is a part of its efforts to give its tourism prospects a boost. He also added that plans are being made to ensure that the beaches meet international standards; beaches selected for this purpose include Pati Sonapur and Haripur in Ganjam district, and Muhan, Niladri, and Jahania in Puri district. As per the reports, the tourism and Departments of Forest and Environment will jointly work on this project.

The Chief Minister further revealed that work on Niladri beach is nearing completion, whereas work on the four other shores would likely begin soon. Reportedly, investments of around INR 1.5 crore have been made for each of the five projects.

Reports have it that no permanent buildings will be allowed to be set up on the shores, whereas among the amenities being provided at the beaches will include seating arrangements, toilets, watch towers, and a solar lighting system.

As per a government source, the initiative, if successful, will help make the pilgrim city one of the most sought-after coastal destinations in India.

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