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Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: The budget session of Odisha Assembly on Monday witnessed uproarious scenes with Opposition members trying to corner the Government over delay in appointment of Lokayukta.

Congress legislators raised the issue with Opposition leader Narasingha Mishra demanding a reply from Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik in the House during the Zero Hour.

Apart from Congress, BJP members also demanded the Chief Minister's ruling on the Lokayukta appointment.

Though the Odisha government had passed the Lokayukta law four years back and the Chief Minister had stated that it would be executed in six months, still there has been a delay in the Lokayukta appointment, alleged Opposition members in the Assembly.

Following the din the Speaker initially had adjourned the proceedings of the house till 12.30 PM and later till 3.00 PM following the pandemonium.

BJP MLA Pradip Purohit said, "It is unfortunate that the Lokayukta has not been formed yet even after six years of the passing of the Lokayukta Act. In the State, staring from bureaucrats to politicians are looting government funds allocated under different schemes. We demanded for Chief Minister's reply in the House."

On the other hand, Revenue Minister Maheswar Mohanty accepted smuggling of minor mineral resources in the State.

Replying to a query from Pradip Purohit, Mohanty stated, " Due to shortage of manpower the department has failed to check the theft of minor mineral resources."

The State had collected revenue of 1,760.30 crore in 2017-18 from minor mineral resources as compared to Rs 2,293.89 crore in 2016-17, the minister informed.

Meanwhile, Congress chief whip Tara Prasad Bahinipati lambasted the State government over its failure in successful implementation of potato mission.

"What happened to the funds allocated under the potato mission?" Bahinipati added.

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