Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Dec 16:

Days after the rural housing scheme bluff of Odisha Government was called, the government today presented misleading data pertaining to the ongoing electrification schemes in the state.

According to data presented by the Chief Minister’s office to the press today, 64 lakh households have been electrified in the state so far.

Curiously, it contradicts the data presented in the Assembly as recently as on December 6.

Replying to an unstarred question by Rourkela MLA Dillip Ray, Odisha Energy Minister Pranab Prakash Das on December 6 revealed that only 58,29,120 households have been connected to the grid out of 96,53,592 in the state leaving behind a whopping 38 lakh (40 percent) yet-to-be-electrified households.

The difference in the numbers presented by the government in a span of 10 days is a staggering 5,70,000 households.

Presiding over a review meeting held at the state Secretariat today, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik asked Energy Department officials to ensure electrification of all the villages of the state by March 2017 and each household by March 2019, the press note by the CMO’s office said.

It further added that 2156 villages were electrified last year. As many as 1318 villages that remain off the grid would be electrified by March 2017.

The Chief Minister, during the meeting, asked the officials to electrify BPL families, hostels catering to SC/ST students and primary and community health centers on a priority. Besides, he advised to take up electrification on a priority in Kandhamal, Nuapada, Malkangiri and Nabarangpur districts.