Naveen names two more BJD MLAs as DPC chiefs

Bhubaneswar: The State government today appointed two more ruling party MLAs as chairpersons of the District Planning Committees (DPC).

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik approved the names of Nimapara MLA Sameer Das and Udala MLA Golak Naik as DPC chiefs. While Das has been appointed as the chief of Puri DPC, Nayak will head the Mayurbhanj body.

“The chairpersons of the DPCs will get the status of Minister of State (MoS),” an official at the Chief Minister’s Office said.

On January 25, the State government had appointed nine legislators of the ruling party as chairpersons of DPCs. The state government’s move had come within a fortnight of the amendment of the Odisha Offices of Profit Act, 1961.

While Lanjigarh MLA Balabhadra Majhi was appointed the Kalahandi district planning committee chief, Bhatli MLA became the chairperson of Deogarh district.

Parjang MLA Nursingha Charan Sahu was appointed chairperson of Dhenkanal district. Other law-makers who were appointed as DCPs were: Balikuda-Ersama MLA Prasant Kumar Mudili (Jagatsinghpur), Berhampur MLA Ramesh Chandra Chyaupatnaik (Ganjam), Patana MLA Hrushikesh Naik (Keonjhar), Nabarangpur MLA Manohar Randhari (Nabarangpur), Jaydev MLA Sashi Bhusan Behera (Khurda) and Pallahara MLA Mahesh Sahu (Angul).

The state cabinet on January 16 had approved a proposal to amend the Odisha Offices of Profit (removal of disqualification) Act, 1961, which paves the way for MLAs to head DPCs.

Though the state government passed the Odisha District Planning Committees (amendment) Bill, 2015, which has provisions for the MLAs to head the DPC, in the last Assembly session, it could not be implemented due to some technical difficulties.

The amendment to the Odisha Offices of Profit (removal of disqualification) Act, 1961, has removed the provision of disqualification of MLAs on the ground of office of profit.

DPCs have been constituted and reconstituted as per the provisions of the Orissa District Planning Committees (ODPC) Act.and Orissa District Planning Committees (ODPC) Rules, at the district level for formulation of District Plans.