BJD raises Polavaram issue in Assembly; stages dharna

Bhubaneswar: A day after BJD MPs opposed the Polavaram project in the Parliament; ruling party legislators raked up the issue in the State assembly today protesting the central government’s stand on the matter.

While the Congress and BJP created ruckus inside the house over the irregularities in the recruitment of engineers; the ruling party legislators concurrently raised the Polavaram issue. The issue was initially raised by Malkangir legislator Manas Madkami.

Soon after the house was adjourned following disruption, BJD members staged a dharna outside the house near the Mahatma Gandhi’s statue shouting slogans and flagging placards.

“The issue raised by our parliamentarians in Rajya Sabha was also highlighted by our legislators today. The Polavaram issue has exposed both the Congress and BJP. The current NDA regime is no different from the UPA, which supported the Polavaram project with a political motive and turned a blind eye to the rules and regulations governing such a project. While the case is under consideration of the Supreme Court, the NDA regime is going ahead with the project without consulting Odisha, which is an affected state. Despite our request to the Prime Minister through the speaker of the house for time to discuss the matter, we are yet to be given a chance. In this background, issues like Nabard funding approval of an investment plan by the central cabinet and so on and so forth only show how Odisha’s rightful demands are being ignored,” said Industries, School & Mass Education minister Debi Prasad Mishra.

Meanwhile, countering the allegation that the Polavaram issue was being used as a ruse to avoid a discussion on the recruitment scam, BJD spokesperson Samir Das said it is an important issue with a bearing on the interests of the people of Odisha.