Senior leader in the ruling BJD government in the State, Soumya Ranjan Patnaik, on Sunday said that many people became rich by mining in the mineral rich Keonjhar district of Odisha, and time has come for them to pay back to the district.
"I believe Keonjhar has been neglected in Odisha. It's time for those who have become rich in the last 10-15 years in Odisha from mining in Keonjhar, to pay off their debts," said Patnaik.
Speaking on his recent article claiming the hiding of actual Covid-19 death data in the State, Patnaik said there were always differences of opinion and it must be accepted. Or else, democracy can't survive, he said while reiterating his stand.
"We shouldn't stick to the impression that only I am right and no one else. We are within our rights to look into all opinions from different angles before accepting one. If one doesn't give respect to others' opinion, one looses the respect for his self too," he pointed out.
Patnaik had said that due to administrative failure and negligence, a controversy has erupted over the COVID-19 toll in the State which is further affecting the image of the Odisha government.
The Odisha CM should release a white paper on the fatalities caused by the virus at the earliest, he demanded. "People of the State will love him more, if he displays his courage by releasing the white paper," he had said.
On three leaders from Odisha getting included in the Modi cabinet, Patnaik said that all the MPs are capable and have the experience to handle the responsibilities.