Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Apr 27:
Multi crore chit fund scam and scarcity of water in the state today dominated proceedings in Odisha Assembly as opposition members cornered the government over the issues.
Leader of Opposition Narasingha Mishra raised the chit fund issue during the zero hour and requested the Speaker to take it upfor discussion. He also sought an explanation from the Chief Minister on this. Mishra cited the recent controversy surrounding alleged involvement of Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister Sanjay Das Burma in chit fund scam to press for his demand.
“The leaders keep targeting each other. There is an evident gap between the junior and senior ministers. This has brought the State Government to its knees. This situation adversely affects the prospects of the state. This is why I ask the Leader of the House (the Chief Minister) to issue a clarification,” said Mishra speaking to reporters outside the Assembly.
“Besides, I also urge him to make a statement on his alleged chit fund connections. We had moved an adjournment motion seeking a discussion in the House; however, it was not accepted by the Speaker. The Chief Minister is probably worried that a discussion would reveal his secrets,” he added.
On the other hand, Chief Whip of BJD Ananta Das cited that such a discussion was not necessary as the matter is sub judice and the Speaker had already issued a ruling against it.
Apart from the chit fund issue, the opposition members expressed their reservation over the statement issued by Rural Development Minister Badrinarayan Patra pertaining to water crisis in the state.
The Minister had said that the El-Nino effect has worsened the water crisis in the state. Even though it had deployed 924 tankers to facilitate water in some of the places, it had not been able to mitigate the issue completely due to central negligence. He cited that the Union Government has stopped paying the grants under National Rural Drinking Water Project.
Reacting to the statement, while Opposition Chief Whip Tara Prasad Bahinipati pulled up the government for failing to fulfil its promise of facilitating bore wells and called the government “escapist”, BJP MLA Pradip Purohit warned that his party would take to the streets against the government inaction.