Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: The ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) on Friday lashed out at Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan over his claim that Odisha received over Rs 2.86 lakh crore as Central assistance for ensuring rapid growth in the State.

In a presser, BJD leaders alleged that Pradhan's claim regarding construction of 5499 km national highways (NH) in the State in last four years is completely misleading.

The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has constructed only 254 km of the NH while the additional 1058 km road has been constructed jointly by the Odisha government and NHAI.

Centre has generated revenue worth Rs 53,795 crore from the East Coast Railway in the last four years but only Rs 20,000 crore has been allocated to Odisha.

Odisha is getting around Rs 5000 crore less due to the reduction in the fund allocation to the State under the 14th Finance Commission (4.64%) against the 13th Finance Commission (4.78%), the ruling party claimed.

"The Union Minister is trying to mislead the people of Odisha by making false claims about Central assistance to the State," alleged senior BJD leader, Sanjay Das Burma.

Burma also dared Pradhan to order  Chhattisgarh government to stop the illegal construction of barrages on the upper catchments area of Mahanadi river in the larger interest of the people in Odisha.

BJD spokesperson Pratap Deb on the other hand stated that Pradhan should also speak on issues pertaining to Odisha including special category status, increasing minimum support price of paddy, industrial corridor and controlling the rising fuel prices and others.