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Naveen to meet Jaitley, not PM Modi during 6-day Delhi visit

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Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Nov 4:

Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik will not be meeting the Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his six-day visit to the national capital beginning today.

NaveenInstead, Patnaik is scheduled to meet Union Finance minister Arun Jaitley, reportedly to put forth Odisha’s demand for central assistance towards the recent cyclone Hudhud and also to demand the arrear amount of the assistance announced earlier by the Central government towards damages caused by cyclone Phailin last year.

“I shall be going to Delhi tomorrow and meet Union Finance minister Arun Jaitley regarding funds for the damage caused by cyclone Hudhud. I will also draw Jaitley’s attention towards the clearance of the assistance announced for the state hit by cyclone Phailin last year,” Patnaik told reporters here on Monday.

Patnaik said he would also draw the attention of the Union Finance Minister on different matters concerning the interest of the state.

Earlier, the chief minister had written to the prime minister seeking a Rs 500 crore interim assistance relief and rehabilitation package for the Hudhud affected people in Odisha. The Centre is yet to respond to it.

There are reports that the major reason behind Patnaik’s six-day visit to Delhi is to seek protection for his government and senior party colleagues from possible CBI onslaught in the course of the ongoing chit find probe.

Sources said the ruling party is seriously worried after its senior leader Pravat Tripathy was arrested last week. They fear the central investigating agency may turn even more aggressive after the appointment of a new CBI director, a post which they suspect could go to someone they have been desperately trying to block all these days, the sources added.

The sources also said the chief minister chose to meet Jaitley to share his views and worries with him because of his personal rapport with the Union minister and also because the latter is perceived to be extremely close to the Prime Minister.