Bhubaneswar: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday asked Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to take appropriate action against those involved in the attack on the convoy of two central ministers at Bargarh during BJP’s Vikas Utsav celebrations on Friday.
Rajnath also asked Patnaik to ensure that such untoward incidents are not repeated in future.
"The Home Minister spoke to the Chief Minister of Odisha regarding the attack on the Union Ministers Shri Santosh Gangwar and Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti in Bhubaneswar," tweeted the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA).
"The Home Minister has asked the Chief Minister to look into the incident and ensure the safety and security of the union ministers visiting the state," said another tweet.
Meanwhile, accusing chief minister Naveen Patnaik of ‘orchestrating’ the attack on Gangwar, the saffron party has sought the intervention of Governor.
An 11-member delegation of the party called on Governor SC Jamir and submitted a memorandum to him seeking strong action against the attackers.
“The Governor has assured us he will seek a report from the State government on this incident and what action can be taken in the matter against the culprits,” BJP general secretary Prithviraj Harichandan said.
The saffron party leader lambasted the ruling BJD for setting the stage for the attack on Gangwar. He also held the district administration responsible for the breach in security of the Union minister.
“It is completely a case of security breach…. It is very unfortunate…. Stern and exemplary action must be taken against the local MP, MLA and minister Snehangini Chuuria. Two days back, she had threatened through the media that the union minister would not be allowed in the town. The chief minister is directly involved in the matter. So this must be investigated. Action must be taken against police officers and the officials of district administration.”
BJP national general secretary Suresh Pujari was more specific and demanded a CBI inquiry into the case.
“Going by security protocol, two union ministers and one ex-CM of Jharkhand were the guests of Odihsa government. From the video footage, it is clearly seen that the attack was made in the presence of police. The incident would not have happened without express instructions from the chief minister. He must hand over the case to CBI or the probe must done by a special investigating team,” Pujari said addressing media persons.
On the other hand, BJD scotched the allegations and said action had already been initiated immediately after the incident.
“The State government is very much aware of, the laws. Action has already been initiated in yesterday's incident and 15 have been arrested so far. The State government has already taken action against the wrongdoers,” BJD spokesperson Samir Dash said.
On Friday some BJD leaders and workers allegedly pelted stones at the car of Gangwar, who was on his way to attend the Vikas Ustav. Gangwar was accompanied by Union Minister for Food Processing Industries Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, former Jharkhand Chief Minister Arjun Munda and BJP Odisha unit president Basanta Panda.
The BJD workers virtually surrounded Gangwar's vehicle and pelted stones at the vehicles in the convoy when the leaders entered the western Odisha town. All this happened in front of the police.