Govt sitting on PMO letter asking for action on mining, coal scams: LoP

Bhubaneswar: Leader of Opposition Narasingha Mishra on Saturday alleged that a letter written by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) seven months back asking the Chief Secretary of Odisha to take action on the alleged chit-fund and coal block scams in the State had been suppressed by the state government.

Though Mishra did not circulate a copy of the PMO letter, he read out the operative part to media persons, “In the letter, it is written: “I am desired to forward herewith the letter dated 7.12.2015 for action as appropriate.” Usually, action is taken against someone after getting a report following an inquiry. However, the information that was available with the Centre was so serious the Chief Secretary was asked to take action against the chief minister.”

Mishra further stated, “A letter was written about the alleged involvement of the honourable chief minister and the Odisha government in chit-fund and coal scams to the Prime Minister. On basis of the letter, the PMO had written to the chief secretary. However, he has not undertaken any action.”

Refuting the charges, Sashi Bhusan Behera, BJD spokesperson, said, “If they (Congress) have any information regarding the involvement of the chief minister or any minister in any scams, they can write to the Centre again and present their information to the CBI as witness.”

Biswabhusan Harichandan, senior BJP leader, said, “The Chief Secretary cannot take action against the Chief Minister as per the protocol. However, the official could have inquired the matter regarding coal block and chit fund scams and give a report on the persons involved to the Centre.”

The charges of Mishra has created a flutter in the political circles in the State and has set tongues wagging.