Ramakanta Biswas

Bhubaneswar: Bharatiya Janata Party on Thursday slammed the Odisha government alleging that it has betrayed slum dwellers in the name of granting them land rights under Odisha Liveable Habitat Mission (OLHM) or Jaga Mission.

Addressing a presser in Bhubaneswar, State BJP general secretary Lekhashree Samantsinghar alleged that the government duped the slum dwellers by assuring them to provide land rights, electricity and drinking water facilities under the mission launched in 2017. The government also claimed that it bagged World Habitat Award recently for the initiative, while it is not so, said Lekha.

“Odisha Liveable Habitat Mission's website clearly mentioned that 18 lakh people will be benefited from the mission. However, the State government and chief minister Naveen Patnaik himself in his address had said that the mission will benefit 10 lakh people,” Lekhashree said.

Stating that Odisha government bagged the award by furnishing false data, Lekha alleged, “The State government is boasting that it has bagged the international award. The CM himself congratulated himself for this award. When we analysed it, we learnt that the United Nations has not provided the award directly. The award was given by a private agency in partnership with the UN.”

“The government also claimed that it is the winner of the award. However, according to provision, those who bag gold are the winners. A total of eight awards were given and the gold award recipient is the winner. The World Habitat website says that Odisha government was the finalist, not the winner. It has bagged bronze award,” Lekhashree added.

The BJP leader further alleged that the State government has not granted land rights to a single person even though it claims that 51,000 people received the land rights. “The state government has issued a piece of paper which is not a land rights. We strongly criticise the mission of the government,” she added.

Also Read: Ironic! Poster Girl Of Odisha’s Jaga Mission Yet To Receive Land

"Slum dwellers have received land and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has assured land to more people. Our CM will not leave anyone in misery and extend help to all," said BJD leader Arabinda Dhali in response to Lekha’s allegations.