No let up in protest over ORV Act on last day of Assembly

Bhubaneswar: There was no let up for the government on the issue of implementation of the Odisha Reservation of Vacancies (ORV) Act in admission to engineering and medical courses on what turned out to be the last day of the budget session of the Assembly as ST, SC MLAs belonging to the Opposition Congress and BJP continued to put pressure for a decision on the matter.

“The State government is turning a blind eye towards the rights and interests of the ST and SC people of Odisha, who account for as much as 38% of the population. It is quite unfortunate,” said BJP leader Rabi Naik.

“While we are trying to present our demands inside the House, the ruling party’s behaviour is nothing short of indifferent. Today also we tried to seek an answer from the chief minister but the result was the same,” said Prafulla Majhi of Congress.

Anant Das of the ruling BJD, however, sought to defend the government on the issue saying; “Our ST&SC department has written a letter seeking reservation in Medical and Engineering seats. In this case, the agency appointed by the Central government will deal with the matter. Besides, we are yet to receive the verdict from the Supreme Court.”

SC ad ST wings of both the Congress and BJP have also taken to the streets demanding implementation of the ORV act.

Notably, the SC and ST MLAs of have been staging demonstrations inside the house since past one week seeking implementation of OVR Act and 38% reservation in Higher Education.The House has been repeatedly adjourned because of Opposition protest over the issue. During this period, the ST, SC MLAS have tried out various modes of protest, including playing beggars and prostrating before the Chief Minister inside the house.