Vikash Sharma

Stakes are high for the upcoming 2024 elections in Odisha and the major political parties are not leaving any stone unturned to attack and counter-attack their rivals as the last resort to showcase their dominance and leave an impression on the voters. Amid this, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Wednesday brought a ‘chargesheet’ against the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) in Odisha.

The BJP leaders alleged that the BJD, which has completed 25 years in power in Odisha, has only misled and harassed the people of the state. The saffron party also raised several issues, including corruption, labour migration, lack of measures for the welfare of people and lack of employment opportunities in the state.

Odisha BJP president Manmohan Samal, and other senior leaders of the party including party’s National Vice-President Baijayant Panda were present during the release of the chargesheet against the Odisha government at a special function held at Bhubaneswar today.

Through the chargesheet, the focus of BJP is to strike a chord with the people of Odisha by asking several pertinent questions with the tagline –‘Kete Dina Au Sahiba, Parivartan Aniba (How long do we tolerate, it's time to bring a change).

While addressing the event, Union Minister Bhupender Yadav said, “Odisha will witness both Lok Sabha and Assembly Elections. BJP is committed and fighting the elections to come to power and provide good governance. But here in Odisha, there have been a lot of irregularities in the 25 years of BJD rule. We have witnessed a declining graph of BJD as far as the upliftment of farmers, infrastructure, and other aspects are concerned. The Odisha government had promised to provide irrigation facilities and set up cold storages in 314 blocks, but it has failed to achieve the target.”

Yadav said that the BJD claimed that the KALIA scheme would bring a massive change in the lives of farmers, but the government later admitted that the number of beneficiaries under the scheme dropped.

“It shows that the BJD is working with an anti-farmer mindset. The government has failed in the last 25 years to increase irrigation, farmers' income, and setting up cold storage. Similarly, NCRB data shows that Odisha is a place where the crime against women has increased. Here the BJD government has failed miserably to give protection to women in the last 25 years. The rise in the number of missing children is also another area of concern along with the suicide of women here,” Yadav said.

Also Read | BJP chargesheet against BJD prepared on feedback of people; it shows Odisha lagging on several fronts: Party VP Jay Panda

The Union Minister further said that there is a jobless situation for the youths in Odisha. The labourers from Odisha are migrating to other parts of the country. In the last one year, over 40,000 labourers have moved out of Odisha which has been highlighted by the media, he added.

“The BJD government has failed to meet the aspirations of the youths. Apart from this, 4300 lecturer posts are vacant in the state. It shows that the Higher Education system has made a mockery of Odisha’s culture when its literature is so rich. The total teachers in colleges and universities dropped to 40000 in 2019 from 43000 in 2015-16 while the tally is much better in West Bengal, Jharkhand and other states,” Yadav said.

According to BJP, under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government, there has been massive infrastructural development across the country. Unfortunately, the Odisha government has admitted that 6412 villages lack road connectivity and the maximum number of villages are in tribal areas. 

Odisha Providing Electricity At Cheaper Rate To Tamil Nadu?

The Union Minister also targetted the Odisha government alleging that Odisha is providing electricity to Tamil Nadu at much lower rates than what is being charged from the consumers in the state.

“The Tamil Nadu Generation Distribution Corporation is buying power at 2.53 paisa per unit from Odisha while the consumers of the state are being charged 2.83 paisa per unit. The top leaders and those running the government in Odisha need to answer this to the people of the state,” said Yadav.

Odisha BJP president Manmohan Samal said, “The BJD is anti-farmer, anti-poor, anti-youth and anti-women government. 40 lakh families lost money in chit fund scam and the government misled them by announcing a corpus fund. So far, not a single penny has been released to the chit fund victims. The state government has failed to protect the common man.”

According to Samal, there is no democratic set-up in Odisha as questions have been raised on the respect of ministers and MLAs in the last five years.

“We will reach every village of Odisha as the BJD government has hurt the sentiments of people and ignored Odia pride. Anti-social elements are not needed in Odisha as only 2 to 4 top officials are unleashing terror in the state. MLAs and Ministers are silent. In Odisha, now officers are terrorising people while the party’s MLAs and Ministers are busy fixing tents and managing traffic in the state. The people of Odisha want a change. Nobody can remain in power by terrorising others and ruining democracy,” Samal added.

According to Samal, Ministers and MLAs are not ‘slaves’, rather they are connected with the lives of people of the state and they do not deserve such treatment.

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