Shimla, Jul 10 (PTI) Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu on Wednesday said that Rs 201 crore has been allocated for the construction of a milk processing plant at Dhagwar in Kangra district.

The plant is being developed in collaboration with the National Dairy Development Board and the construction work is scheduled to begin soon.

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In a statement issued here, the chief minister said the plant will have an initial capacity to process 1.50 lakh litres per day (LLPD) of milk, which could be further expanded up to 3 LLPD.

The fully automatic plant aims to produce a variety of dairy products such as curd, lassi, butter, ghee, paneer, flavoured milk, khoya and mozzarella cheese. This project is expected to enhance the prosperity of farmers in Kangra, Hamirpur, Chamba and Una districts, he added.

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"As the project unfolds, it is poised to bring prosperity to the dairy farming community and ensure that farmers get good value for their hard work," he added.

Once the processing plant begins operations, the government also plans to start production of milk powder, ice cream and various types of cheese at this plant.

"Strengthening the rural economy is imperative for making Himachal Pradesh self-sufficient and prosperous, as about 95 per cent of the state's population resides in rural areas. Without achieving the goal of strengthening the rural economy by making farmers financially stable and strong, the vision of a prosperous and self-reliant Himachal remains unattainable," Sukhu said.

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