Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Oct 2:
Reacting sharply to the accusation by senior minister Dr Damodar Rout that he had influenced the state government to promote the ponzi firm Seashore Group’s business and get into tie-ups with it, the president of Odisha Jan Morcha and Rajya Sabha MP Pyarimohan Mohapatra today sought the former’s ouster from the state cabinet for violation of oath of office.
” The statements by Dr Rout are not only baseless but also violate the oath taken by him during his inclusion into the cabinet.It is now up to the chief minister to take a call on whether such a person should be allowed to continue as a minister any further,” the OJM president and former political adviser to Naveen Patnaik told newsmen.
On Thursday Dr Rout had told a local news channel that the chit fund business of the Seashore company had flourished in Odisha because of the patronage it had received from the state government. He had also accused Pyarimohan Mohapatra of facilitating the ponzi firm’s growth by putting his influence over the state bureaucracy to good use.
“Whatever the minister stated yesterday about the chit fund scam is against the Odisha government, not against me. The minister has talked in public against the government, not against me,” said Mohapatra to media persons here.
The OJM chief asked chief minister Naveen Patnaik to sack Dr Rout from the ministry for breaching the oath of office.
Mohapatra also lashed out at the government for not taking any action against the chit fund company and sitting over the report of the Central Economic Intelligence Bureau of the Department of Revenue, which had informed the Odisha government about illegal running of money circulation schemes by the Seashore Group as early as in February 2011.
“Why didn’t the then chief secretary Bijay Kumar Patnaik inform the chief minister about the report ? And if he had informed, how is it that the chief minister attended the programme of Seashore Group? The role of the then chief secretary is under the scanner,” said Mohapatra.
Not the one to digest any affront, the minister hit it out at the OJM leader for demanding he be sacked from the cabinet.
“I am well aware of my responsibilities and have not dishonoured my office or position. Besides, who is he (Pyari) to ask me to resign from my post,” said the minister known for the gift of the gab.