Pradeep Pattanayak

The Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday came down heavily on the Biju Janata Dal (BJD)-ruling dispensation over its stoic silence on the recovery of Rs 350 crore during IT raids on liquor traders in Bolangir even though one month has passed since. 

“If the Odisha Chief Minister thinks he is clean, he should write a letter to Justice Arijit Pasayat, who is the Deputy Chairman of the Special Investigation Team (SIT) on Black Money, seeking a probe into the recovery of such huge amounts of money,” said BJP spokesperson Manoj Mahapatra in a press conference in Bhubaneswar. 

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“One month has passed since the recovery of Rs 350 crore from the liquor traders in Bolangir. But the BJD is still keeping mum. We wish to know why the Chief Minister is silent and what is the relationship between the Sahu brothers and the BJD,” said Mahapatra. 

“The Chief Minister is well aware of the fact that a leader of his party from the coastal part had links with Boudh Distillery. We have a demand before the Chief Minister. He should write a letter to the SIT on Black Money requesting an investigation. Then only we will know that the Chief Minister is clean,” he added. 
The party alleged that Congress MP Dhiraj Sahu had stashed the money to give some portion of it to mahua flower farmers and the rest to the state government as revenue as per the state government’s liquor policy. 

Demanding payment of outstanding dues to the mahua flower farmers, the party also wished to know whether the money was to be paid to the state government as revenue or to the party as election funding. 

No comments have been received from the BJD.

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