Puri: Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has once again targeted Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik for keeping mum over the Ratna Bhandar key controversy. In a series of tweets on Thursday, Pradhan stated that while the CM presents his view on every small incident, his silence over the missing Ratna Bhandar key for so long has raised many eyebrows.
Stressing on the fact that 4.5 crore Odias’ sentiments are attached to Lord Jagannath, Pradhan stated that people world over pray Him with equal sincerity and devotion. “ But all the devotees are a perturbed lot with the missing of the Ratna Bhandar key. Since April 4 the government was aware of the missing key after the team returned from within the outer Bhandara inspection as per the High Court orders. Though over two months have elapsed, the CM keeping silent over the issue has disturbed all, he further stated.
Launching a scathing attack on the CM for hiding facts, the union minister also said that instead of initiating probe, the CM has hidden facts and that has intensified doubts in minds of the people. “At one time when the issue is directly related to the emotions of the people, changing the chief administrator is something that has given rise to further suspicion. Add to it the sudden revelation of the recovery of duplicate key. Even the statements of the collector and law minister on the missing key and duplicate key are contradictory to each other,” Pradhan elaborated.
Pradhan said since 1970 there has been no proof of the key being brought from the treasury. If the keys were not in treasury also, during inspections of Ratna Bhandara in 1978 and 1985, how was the Bhitara Bhandara opened? “In the past the attack of Kala Pahada on Srimandir had insulted the Odia sentiments, and now when the safety and security of the treasure trove of Lord Jagannath is at stake, what kind of Kala Pahada mentality has the CM being influenced by? All these have raised many questions in the minds of the people who need the CM to open up and clarify their doubts,’’ he stressed.
On the other hand, Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) Niranjan Patnaik has asked six questions to the CM seeking his reply as to when and who gave permission for making a duplicate key of the Ratna Bhandar and why is the State government silent over the finding of duplicate key of Ratna Bhandar and where is the actual key.
However, till this report was filed, no response was received from the Chief Minister or any leader of the ruling party on the matter.