Central negligence: Pradhan says Odisha resorting to shadow-boxing

Bhubaneswar: Mounting a scathing attack on Naveen Patnaik-led BJD government in Odisha, Union Petroleum and Natural Gas minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Saturday alleged that it is resorting to shadow-boxing with the Central government.

“Accusing the Centre of neglecting Odisha is like lighting a lantern in day time. The BJD government has unleashed a proxy war against the Centre,” Pradhan told mediapersons here. The State will be benefitted the most from the Centre’s two or three decisions of national importance, he added.

Criticizing the state government’s recent decision to increase value-added tax (VAT) on petrol and diesel, the Union minister said it is not a model system. Besides, he informed, the Centre is going to invest Rs 1 lakh crore in petroleum sector.

Addressing the gathering at a public meeting to mark BJD’s anniversary on Friday, party supremo Patnaik had accused the Centre of neglecting the State.

Meanwhile, BJD spokesperson Amar Satapathy said this is not a fight between state and center.

“Whenever the interest of the state will be hampered, we will raise our voice,” he added.