Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, July 14:
The controversial Polavaram dam issue caused an uproar in the Odisha Assembly today with the ruling BJD members disrupting the proceedings of the House by standing up with placards in their hands at the start of Question Hour and demanding the cancellation of the multipurpose dam project.
Later, BJD members staged a dharna in front of the Mahatma Gandhi statue protesting against the Centre’s unilateral decision to go ahead with the Polavaram dam project. They denounced the manner which the Andhra Reorganisation Bill, allowing merger of some villages and mandals of Telangana with Andhra Pradesh was passed in the Lok Sabha without holding discussions with stake holders.
A delegation of the BJD members submitted a memorandum on this issue to the President of India through the Odisha Governor Dr SC Jamir at the Raj Bhawan here.
“Treasury bench members disrupting proceedings of the House is condemnable. This has been done to avoid a discussion on the kidney sale racket through an adjournment motion. The act of disruption shows the government is either scared to hold a discussion on the issue or needs some more time” said Leader of the Opposition Narasingh Mishra in his reaction to the happenings in the House today.
Similarly, senior BJP leader Biswabhusan Harichandan told a local TV channel that the BJD was merely politicking over the issue as the government is not yet clear on how much damage Polavaram project is going to cause in Odisha. The Odisha government has been all through saying that its collecting data, he said.
Harichandan said if the project is going to cause any damage to Odisha, the state government should call an all party meeting and then present facts to the Centre. This could be followed up with discussions.
Protests in undivided Koraput
BJD workers staged dharnas in front of central government offices at several places in the undivided Koraput district.
The markets remained closed and buses remained off the road in Rayagada, Gunupur, Koraput, Malkangiri and Narayanpatna, sources said.