IOCL campaign row: Collector asked to submit status report

Bhubaneswar: A day after BJD’s allegation of BJP violating Supreme Court guidelines by putting Petroleum minister Dharmendra Pradhan’s picture on the campaign vans of Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) named ‘Jan Amantran’ vehicles’, the Information and Public Relation department on Monday sought a report from Jagatsinghpur district administration.

I&PR department secretary asked the Jagatsinghpur collector to submit a status report over alleged violation of SC stricture.

Propagation of different Central Government programmes through the campaign vans had sparked off a war of words between the BJD and BJP on Sunday.

Two BJD ministers- Damodar Rout and Ashok Panda- had raised objection to ministers’ photograph on oil refinery function posters.

“Campaign of Central Government programmes in IOCL vehicles is indecent. Those who lack basic knowledge about Centre and State relations do such things”, Excise Minister Damodar Rout had said.

Similarly, Tourism minister Ashok Panda had alleged that putting photo of a minister on programme posters is a violation of Supreme Court guidelines. “How far is it justified to launch a ‘campaign unit’ instead of an oil refinery unit with government expenses?” asked Tourism minister Ashok Panda.

However, the BJP had dismissed the allegations saying there is no politics in it. The campaign aims to make people aware of the pro-people programmes launched by the Centre, BJP leader Prithviraj Harichandan said and asked, “Why is the BJD so intolerant?”

The campaign vans were flagged off by Pradhan on Saturday to invite people to the dedication of `35,000 crore Paradip oil refinery project of the IOCL to the nation by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on February 7.