BJD hits out at Centre over mines auction

Bhubaneswar: BJD leaders Tuesday hit out at the central government for ignoring the Odisha government’s demand to auction major mines without giving any extension to miners already operating in the state.

Addressing a gathering of thousands of students belonging to the Biju Chhatra Janata Dal here, party leaders and some ministers said that a conspiracy is being hatched against the state to keep it underdeveloped.

“There was a conspiracy against Odisha 60 years back. Now again a conspiracy is being hatched to keep the state poor,” said Food and Consumer Welfare Minister Sanjay Dasburma.

“The Odisha government has decided to auction major mines, aiming to generate more revenue to initiate welfare programmes. But the central government took a decision that captive and merchant mines would continue to operate till next five years and 15 years respectively,” he said.

Dasburma said the state would lose Rs.30,000 crore following the decision.

The central government has neglected the state in the railway sector despite the Odisha government assurances that it would provide land free of cost for some projects.

Industry Minister Devi Prasad Mishra said the central government has done injustice to the state by denying permission to the state to auction its mines.