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Mrunal Manmay Dash

Bhubaneswar: The Opposition parties in Odisha raised questions over the implementation of various housing schemes in the State after the government claimed that lakhs of people were evacuated from kutcha houses to safer places ahead of cyclone Yaas.

Addressing a presser, the Deputy Leader of Opposition in Odisha Assembly, Bishnu Charan Sethi said, “The State government is beating its own trumpet over providing people with pucca houses. If that is true then why do they have to shift millions of people living in thatched houses to shelter points during cyclone?”

“The Centre is providing lakhs of pucca houses under PMAY scheme. The State government should have distributed them among the beneficiaries. But given the number of evacuations we see in each cyclone under BJD’s 22 years of rule, it creates doubt on the Government's capability,” Sethi said.

“In fact, the Centre has provided 8 lakh pucca houses to Odisha recently. I really do not know who will receive those houses. And I am sure, even more numbers of people will get evacuated from their thatched houses when the next cyclone hits Odisha,” Sethi further alleged.

Similarly, veteran Congress leader and MLA Suresh Routray targeted the State government over the number of evacuations too. Routray urged the government to utilise the grants and aides received from the Centre to repair houses, infrastructure and restore normalcy in the cyclone-hit coastal district as soon as possible.

Routray, however, lauded the coordination between Centre and State to manage Cyclone Yaas in Odisha. “By the grace of God, Yaas did not hit Odisha as per the speed projected. But the damages are real and widespread. The government should fast track the restoration works,” Routray said.

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