Thursday, June 28, 2012

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

‘Aluminium industry can make Odisha prosperous’

The Pioneer, June 27, 2012

At a seminar recently by the Indian Institute of Chemical Engineers on the ‘Prospects of Alumina and Aluminium Industry in Odisha,’ many eminent scientists, academicians, engineers and industry houses interacted on the importance of bauxite, alumina and aluminium for development of Odisha.
Speaking on the occasion, president and COO of Vedanta Aluminium Ltd Dr Mukesh Kumar pointed out that Odisha is blessed with high quality bauxite reserves, and based on the present analysis nearly 60 per cent of India’s reserves are available in Odisha. However, this wealth of natural resources could not be translated into the State’s economic prosperity. The availability of such vast natural resources could have been used for turning the mineral and metal potential of Odisha into a goldmine and eradicating poverty, but unfortunately the State is still reeling under chronic poverty without realising the benefits of these natural resources.
Dr Kumar said it has been projected that the country’s aluminium demand may touch around 5 MT by 2015 and 10 MT by 2020 which can generate employment to nearly 7 million people by 2020. Besides, the industry can contribute nearly Rs 33,000 crore annually to the exchequer. If immediate measures are not taken to boost aluminium production domestically, the targets of electrifying all the villages would also be difficult to achieve in the absence of power distribution network, which is the main consumer aluminium.
He further observed that India, particularly Odisha which is the main depository of aluminium reserves, could not take the advantage of its mineral wealth and, accordingly, not even a single alumina refinery and smelter could have been put up in the State even after 25 years of commissioning of Nalco. The Vedanta integrated aluminium complex set up in Odisha is also forced to run at lower capacity and no bauxite from the State could be made available to the project.
Also present on the occasion were Padmashree PK Jena and academician Prof Omkar Nath Mohanty. They said that Odisha’s rich mineral resources need to be utilised effectively and efficiently for inclusive growth. The industry as well as scientists and experts appealed to the policymakers to realise that time has come when one must start using the State’s mineral wealth for eradication of poverty and bringing the State as a leader in the GDP contribution of the nation.
Former IPICOL chairman HP Mishra said it is high time companies shifted from basic metal production to alloy production, which would benefit the downstream industries in adding value to aluminium. The aluminium industry can provide opportunities for other ancillary units like caustic soda plant based on salt and lime, kiln plant, casting and extrusion facilities for automobile components and aluminium alloys manufacturing facilities for space and defence.

Monday, June 18, 2012

‘Re-assess Odisha’s seismic status’

The Pioneer, June 18, 2012

In the wake of the recent earthquake with a magnitude of 3.9 in the Richter scale hitting Balangir, Nuapada and Kalahandi districts of western Odisha on June 9 last, considered as seismically quiet zone, former Sambalpur MP Bhabani Shankar Hota has demanded reassessment of the seismic status of Odisha, including the quiet zones.
The epicentre of the earthquake was Kalahandi. The known earthquake zone in western Odisha are Sambalpur-Talcher, Sambalpur-Jharsuguda and Talcher-Deogarh-Rourkela and past history has shown that the magnitude of earthquake in these zones has been limited to between 4.5 and 5.3 in Richter scale. However, no tremor ever occurred in Balangir-Kalahandi-Nuapada in known history.
So, there is an urgent need now to study the cause of the new phenomenon. Most of the reservoirs are mapped as seismically active zone. It has to be further investigated whether the Indravati project led to a rearrangement of seismic zone, Hota said.
Hota further said earlier Latur region in Maharashtra was also mapped as seismically quiet region and yet devastation occurred there due to an earthquake of a magnitude of 5.5 to 6 in the Richter scale in 1993 in which about 10,000 people had died. Hence, the Odisha Government should reassess the seismic status of Odisha, including the Balangir-Kalahandi-Nuapada region.
Similarly, NRO Professor Digambara Patra from the American University of Beirut has said the earthquake in Kalahandi, Balangir and Nuapada did not indicate that human activities like mining or dam had caused it.
“The regions come under lowest (Zone 1) seismic zones in India. However, Zone 1 does not mean it is no earthquake zone. But certainly, it is also not wise to link the minor earthquake with human activities as a few activists may overreact to suit their propaganda against industrialisation and dam. So steps should be taken both at the Government and private levels to build earthquake resistance buildings in the areas,” he said.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Odisha Government says Mega Food Park in Rayagada on track

Orissadiary, June 14, 2012

Report by Jyoti Prakash, Bhubaneswar: Govt has put Mega Food Park, Rayagada on track with the objective of increasing the level of food processing and ensuring value addition to agri-products.  The grounding of the project has been given a boost in the  State Level Coordination Committee  held under Chairmanship of Chief Secretary Bijay Kumar Patnaik in secretariat conference hall today afternoon.
Discussions in the meeting reveal that with the approval from the Ministry of Food Processing( GOI),  Govt of Odisha has decided to set up a Mega Food Park at Rayagada, the industrial hub of southern Odisha. The park will have its major Primary Processing Centers ( PPC)  at Khurda, Nawarangpur and Gopalpur ( Ganjam). PPCs will also be set up in Koraput, Bolangir, Kalahandi, Nuapada, Subanrapur,Ganjam, Gajpati, Malkangiri, Boudh and Kandhamal.
The collectors of theses districts have been asked to locate 5 to 10 acres of land in each district for the purpose. It has also been decided that Collection Centers ( CC) will be established in each block of these districts. Each collection centers will need about 2 to 5 acres of land.
The Food Park will be developed over an area of 50 acres. However, it has been proposed to extend the area to 100 acres in different phases to accommodate more investors. It has been decided that the project will be implemented on PPP mode with investment of around Rs200 cr for creation of enabling infrastructure. It will create direct and indirect employment opportunity for around 30000 people. To ground the project one SPV has been formed involving IDCO, Expo Bio-Tech Ltd, Keventor Agro Ltd. and Basanta Devi Charitable Trust. The SPV has been named as MITS Mega Food Park and it has been incorporated by the Registrar of Companies Odisha.
The raw material viability analysis shows there is potentiality for growth of 16 types of industries can  in the Mega Food Park. These sectors are maize processing, rice processing, diary industry, poultry, spices, fruits & vegetables, mango pulp, tomato puree, grains-milling & processing such as breakfast cereals, coffee, cashew processing, pickle industry, tamarind processing, Ready To Eat Products, soft drinks & natural juice, ancillary material for food packaging. It has been decided that investors awareness programmes will be organized at Rayagada, Berhampur, Koraput, Bolangir, Titilagarh and Bhubaneswar for attracting the entrepreneurs and investors.
Chief Secretary has advised the department of Micro Small & Medium Enterprise to expedite the process of formulation of the State Food Processing Policy. Sri Patnaik has advised the department to formulate the Operational guide Lines along with the policy so as to facilitate expedited process of implementation of the policy. Pr. Secretary Finance J.K.Mohapatra, Pr. Secretary ME&ME N.K.Sundaray, Pr.  Secretary Agriculture R.L.Jamuda, Secretary Fisheries & Animal Resource Development Satyabrata Sahu, CMD,IPICOL C.J.Venugopal, Special Secretary MS&ME Panchanana Das,  R.D.C. South Division L.N.Nayak , collectors of Rayagada, Bolangir and Kalahandi, Director, MITS Mega Food Park Ltd. B.K.Panda along with other senior officials participated in discussions.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Quake in western Odisha

IBNlive, June 9, 2012
Bhubaneswar, Jun 9 (PTI) An earthquake of slight intensity with a magnitude of 3.9 on the Richter scale was experienced in some places of Odisha's western region today, official sources said. The tremmor which was felt in Bolangir, Nuapada and Kalahandi districts occurred at 1.45 pm. "The epicentre of the tremmor was at latitude 20.1 degree north and longitude 82.9 degree east in Kalahandi district of Odisha," said A K Sahoo, director in-charge of the Meteorological Centre here. Though there had been no damage to human lives or properties, people in large number came out of their houses after feeling the tremmor. "We felt the tremmor twice in quick succession," a resident of Nuapada said.

A nice video of Wagon Factory: Bhakta Charan Das exposes state Govt and BJD

Thanks to Sri Saroj Mahapatra for sharing this.

Vedanta to buy aluminium firm in Odisha for Rs 1,811 cr

Business Standard, June 9, 2012
Move to give Anil Agarwal secure bauxite supply deal linked to milestones
Shubhashish, Arijit Barman & Dillip Kumar Satapathy / Mumbai/Bhubaneswar Jun 09, 2012, 00:14 IST

Anil Agarwal of Vedanta has found an ally in Larsen & Tourbo (L&T) to bail himself out of the raw material crisis ailing his flagship Odisha aluminium project.
The London-listed Vedanta, promoted by Agarwal, has entered into a tripartite agreement with L&T and its partner Dubai Aluminium Company (Dubal) to buy them out from their aluminium venture in Odisha, called Raykal Aluminium. Raykal was the SPV (special purpose vehicle) floated by the two partners.
In a filing with the US regulator, SEC, Vedanta has said it has already acquired 24.5 per cent stake in Raykal for Rs 200.70 crore and has the right to acquire the entire 100 per cent over a period of time for a total consideration of Rs 1,811 crore, “subject to certain milestones being achieved.”

  • 1992: L&T gets prospecting licences  for two bauxite mines in Odisha with potential reserves of 280 million tonnes
  • 2005: L&T and Dubal form a 76:24 JV, Raykal, to set up a 3-Mt alumina refinery in Odisha for ~5,000 crore, which would source bauxite from L&T
  • 2006-10: Project proposal expanded, but fails to take off
  • 2012: Dubal exits Raykal, selling its 24% stake to Vedanta Aluminium for ~200.70 crore; VAL has option to buy out 100 per cent in Raykal

Analysts say the company’s value will rise exponentially with the progress of the mining development programme.
Since 1993, L&T has been sitting on two to three prospecting licences (PLs) for bauxite mines in Sijmali and Kurumali of Rayagad and Kalahandi districts in Odisha. Under the original agreement, the entire bauxite excavated from these mines was to be used by Raykal for its own proposed alumina refinery and smelter project in the state. But with the project not taking off due to various reasons, Dubal walked out of the venture and will now be replaced by Vedanta Aluminium (VAL).
According to the Directory of Geology in Odisha, the two mines are estimated to have 250-280 million tonnes of bauxite reserves, good enough to take care of VAL’s current requirement for 50-90 years. Such a long-term bauxite supply agreement is bound to give Vedanta’s Lanjigargh project a much needed lifeline.
Vedanta had entered into an agreement with L&T and Dubal on February 23 this year, but the disclosures were revealed only last week. There is also widespread expectation that Vedanta or its Indian arm Sterlite will make a detailed announcement this weekend, which even saw the Sterlite stock react positively by 3.5 per cent to close the day at Rs 100.60 when the Sensex ended flat. The L&T stock moved up 2.53 per cent to Rs 1,309 apiece.
When contacted, L&T’s spokesperson did not want to comment on the subject, citing compliance issues. Vedanta’s spokesperson said beyond the SEC communiqué, they had nothing to add.
Analysts cheered the positive news expected to give a major relief to Vedanta Aluminium on the raw material security front. Its massive Rs 60,000-crore project to expand its alumina refining capacity from a million tonnes to five million tonnes has been facing problems over the past few years after environment clearances were not sanctioned for its captive bauxite mines in the Niyamgiri hills. The company has already pumped in Rs 45,000 crore into the project, but with no raw material linkages it has been desperately seeking alternatives to revive sinking production.
VAL has an ambitious plan of integrated aluminium facilities, including an operating alumina refinery at Lanjigarh and an aluminium smelter at Jharsuguda.
“With this acquisition of Raykal, a major chunk of VAL’s raw material issues will get solved,” said Ravindra Deshpande, metals analyst, Elara Securities. According to his calculations, the cost of production of VAL can come down by around $150 per tonne, thanks to this strategic acquisition.
VAL, in its business plan, had said with the captive raw material, the cost of producing aluminium would be around $1,200 per tonne, one of the lowest in the world. Currently, the aluminium LME is ruling at less than $2,000 per tonne. Since VAL is now forced to buy bauxite from outside — local suppliers, BALCO and Orissa Mining Company — its cost of making one tonne of aluminium is over $2,100, causing cash losses to the company. This is the reason VAL is not running at its full capacity. But, a secure bauxite supply will help turn around VAL’s finances and bring down its $4-billion debt. These depressed numbers have also upset the Sterlite and Vedanta shareholders. They are believed to be unhappy with VAL getting merged into Sesa-Sterlite, scheduled later this month.
According to senior officers at the Odisha steel and mines department, with the change of shareholders in Raykal, L&T’s prospecting licence that has lapsed due to inactivity will get “revived” and subsequently get upgraded into a proper mining licence.
The state is also expected to earn a minimum of Rs 400 crore in mining levies. “L&T was allotted two mines nearly 20 years back for prospecting. However, a mining licence was not granted in favour of the company as it had no end-use plant at the time of expiry of the prospecting licence period. They can be renewed in favour of the company if the project gathers some pace following the restructuring of the promoter JV company.”
However, Vedanta group officials said mining would start in a few years, once the MLs were in place. The payout from Vedanta is also gradual and is based on gradual development of the mining programme. “There is still a long way to go. Both central and state clearances are required before the project can take off. So, it’s premature to say all the issues have been sorted,” an official in the know added. Parts of the land where the mines are located are also under 'village forest' category, thereby requiring forest clearance under Stage 2 of Ministry of Environment & Forests approvals.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Odisha: Tourism department neglecting Kalahandi

Orissadiary, June 7, 2012

Report by Debadatta Panda; Kalahandi: Although Kalahandi is enriched in tourist spots as well as historical places but due to lack of interest of the Govt. and local people no such development of  tourist sector in Kalahandi district. Kalahandi was the thirteenth district of Odisha and now it became the thirtieth in all respect in the state.

There are so many historical places as well as visiting spots in the kalahandi district but due to want of tourist infrastructure no such developments are seen. The tourism dept. is neglecting Kalahandi and so many official is posted for it. As there is no any office building the office is functioning in a revenue quarter at Bhawanipatna since 1997.In the year 1979 when the tourist office started at that time a tourist officer,a statistical assistant,one clerk and two peons with one chowkidar was posted. Later on the statistical assistant, clerk, pein and chowkidar post was lying vacant. In last january the tourist officer was placed under suspenssion and the existing one peon will be retired soon.In this context the tourist office at kalahandi will be lying vacant without any employee.
The natural and cultural scenario as well as the eenvironment of Kalahandi is also very attractive. Century and dance forests, mountains are very attractive. The dance forest of Karlapat, Ghanajungle, Niyamgiri, Chura dangar, Ampani and Jaring jungle are very environment supported as wellas the forests of Thuamul Rampur and Mahulpatna area are very coolest and known as Kalahandia kasmir. The temperature of this locality in summer is very low. The Furlijharan waterfall,Origin of Indravati Mardiguda, Jakkam wooden bunglow, natural beauti of Ampani and chhura dangar, kadlighati and Dokrichanchara are some famous points for tourists.Like that the historical places like Asurgad, Gudahandi, Junagad and Thuamul Rampur are very attractive for the tourists. Temple city Junagad and Goddes Manikeswari at Bhawanipatna and Th-Rampur,Shiv temple at Belkhandi,  Saptamatruka temple at    the besides of Tel and Uttei river are the visiting spots in kalahandi.
After all there are somany temple related to human culture like Dokri at Talgud,Sapgaranda and other temples are in kalahandi which can attract to the tourists but as there is no any infrastructure for the tourists no such tourists are comming to this district. Govt. should take steps for the tourism and the people of this locality can get self employment.
The tourist office which  was foundation stonned on 05.09.1992  by the than tourism minister is not yet complited  due to lack of interested shown by the Govt.A tourist complex is also un-complited at Th-Rampur and non to look after it so it is going to be demolished.Govt.should take appropriate step for the evelopment of tourism i Kalahandi soon.

Mass Education Program in Thuamul Rampur in Misery

Shared by Sri Debendra Bisi
June 4, 2012

VAL to make forest inside plant’

The Pioneer, June 7, 2012
Vedanta Aluminium Ltd (VAL), Lanjigarh celebrated the World Environment Day by organising a massive plantation programme. President & COO Dr Mukesh Kumar said one lakh saplings would be planted in and around the plant this year as part of the company’s commitment towards improving the ecology of the area.

He said, “Our mission is to make a forest inside the plant instead of building a plant inside the forest.” He reiterated the company’s objective to make optimum use of natural resources through recycling and recovering of wealth from wastes and making VAL-Lanjigarh the first alumina refinery across the globe to have zero waste in addition to being a zero discharge plant.

For awareness on environment, competitions on slogan and painting were organised among the employees of VAL and associated companies as well as among schoolchildren. The daylong programme also included an awareness march held at the VAL Township by all the families of the company’s employees and school kids followed by plantation and prize giving ceremony to the winners of various competitions.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Scrap asbestos project in Bargarh, urges NRI prof

The Pioneer, June 4, 2012

Asbestos is one of the toxic and carcinogenic materials. In view of its proximity to cause harm, most of the countries are slowly phasing out. In developed nations these materials are already banned. Though these materials are still in use in some old buildings, slowly it is being replaced with new materials, pointed out a non-resident Odia expert.
It is very unfortunate that such a plant is being proposed and established in Bargarh region of Odisha, rued Prof Digambara Patra of the Department of Chemistry in American University of Beirut.
In a letter to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, the NRO professor has urged for the scrapping of the asbestos project in Bargarh.
The most misery for asbestos plant is for the workers who work in such plants. In a poor State like Odisha, once the materials are cheaply available, common people start using it without bothering about environment and health risk associated with it.
Therefore, care must be given not to popularise such toxic materials among poor population, a first step towards it will be to stop the production, he said.

B’patna rally demands black money repatriation

The Pioneer, June 4, 2012

On a call of a nationwide protest given by Yoga Guru Baba Ramdev against corruption and black money, Kalahandi District Bharat Swabhimaan Trust took out a peaceful rally on Sunday morning in Bhawanipatna town from Manikeswari Temple to Balaji Temple.
Hundreds of supporters of the Baba holding placards shouted slogans against the corrupt people saying kala dhan layenge desh ko bachayenge (We will bring back the black money and save the country).
Bharat Swabhimaan and Yuva Bharat district president Dhabaleswar Panda, coordinator Sisir Kumar Pattjoshi, organising secretary Santanu Kumar Patnaik, treasurer Biswamohan Rath, Dilip Choudhary, Roshanlal Agrawal, Ashok Kumar Mund, Ajay Swain, Krushna Chandra Das, among others, were present.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Funds that NGOs get

The Pioneer, June 1, 2012
Anuradha Dutt

Dubious organisations flourish while genuine ones struggle to survive

Last week, the media reported that the bank accounts of 30 non-Government organisations had been frozen. Seventy NGOs had been barred from getting foreign funds. This information was provided by Minister of State for Home M Ramachandran in a written reply in the Lok Sabha. He also revealed that 35 NGOs had been placed in the ‘prior permission’ category,24 cases referred to the CBI and seven to State police. This was in response to a question whether the Government had received complaints about some organisations using foreign funds against the nation’s interests. To those who have closely been following reports of hawala transactions, and terror and subversion funding being routed through myriad NGOs and shell companies, this number may appear too meagre to believe.
There are numerous foreign-funded NGOs purportedly engaged in welfare work and there are other altruistic NGOs that raise finances locally. The former are in the news for the wrong reasons after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh averred that activists’ protests against the Kudankulam nuclear project were being financed by sources in the United States and the Scandinavian countries. The comment provoked BJP national secretary P Muralidhar Rao to demand that the Centre release a white paper on such funding being used against national interests. The Union Home Ministry’s annual report on foreign contributions has also been recently cited to support the charge that insurgency in tribal areas in the North-eastern States, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Odisha and Madhya Pradesh is being fuelled by funds from abroad.
The Home Ministry’s report apparently states that 2,325 foreign-funded NGOs are registered in Jharkhand, Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh, which are hotbeds of Maoist violence. Between 2009 and 2010, these NGOs received an estimated `600 crore. In the North-east, 516 NGOs received `251 crore; 465 NGOs in Jharkhand got `160 crore from abroad; in Chhattisgarh, the amount was `65 crore; and `143 crore in Madhya Pradesh , all in 2009-2010. Hundreds of crores of rupees are being injected into Odisha to alter its religious profile.
This raises concerns about why the Home Ministry looked the other way, until it was pushed into a corner by repeated acts of Islamist terror in cities, Maoist violence and North-east militancy. It is only when Opposition leaders raised the heat on the Congress-led ruling coalition’s colossal failure to block terror channels by clamping down on sources of funding that some action was initiated. However, those who fear that there is a global conspiracy to balkanise India, just as the Soviet Union was, want that The Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act, 2010, be scrapped altogether. This will quash at its source the menace of foreign funds for potentially subversive activities such as evangelism, civil liberties, tribal uplift, poverty alleviation and the like.
In December 1991, the Soviet Union disintegrated into 15 smaller units, independent countries. Before this happened, the ground for the break-up was prepared by lakhs of of human rights activists and NGOs, recipients of foreign funds, who untiringly propagated glasnost and perestroika — openness and transparency in Government, and economic and political reforms, a campaign that culminated in the disintegration of the Soviet Union. Ethnic insurgency in constituent units contributed to the collapse. The West predictably hailed the events as a triumph of democracy. It marked the end of the Cold War between the US and the then USSR, leaving just the US-led power axis as a super power, and gave the transnational companies access to huge untapped markets and large natural resources.
The Government appears to have woken up rather late to the perils of unmonitored foreign funding. The Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Act came into being in 1976, to monitor foreign funds for voluntary organisations: money coming in as well as going out of the country. It was repealed when the 2010 Act was passed, coming into effect from May 1, 2011. Foreign Contribution (Regulation) Rules, 2011, framed under section 48 of FCRA, 2010 also came into effect at the same time. The new Act was touted as an improvement on the old one, with more stringent provisions being laid down to prevent misuse of such funds. However, if subversion and militancy continue unabated, the demand to scrap the act should be accepted. This will block channels of foreign funding.
For, those who wish to work for others’ uplift will do so by depending on local contributions or their own resources. ‘Mountain man’ Dashrath Manjhi single-handedly chiselled a one km-long, 16 ft-wide road through a hill in Bihar’s Gaya district so that people of his village did not have to travel around to reach Wazirganj, the nearest town. This arduous work, finished in 1982, took 22 years. A 50km distance was reduced to eight km by one man. And in Delhi, Nand Prakash Thareja, aged 87, has singlehandedly been providing succour to hundreds of persons since he retired as a senior bank officer in December 1985.
He began by first raising funds for altruistic bodies via the unique method of garnering contributions from the thousands who consulted him daily for guidance on the basis of astrology, palmistry and numerology. Since August 1996, his own trust has channelised the funds so raised every month to needy students, widows, indigent aged and other charities.
It has also turned a municipal park into a sylvan escape for residents, with an overhead water tank for everyone. The trust has spent over `2.6 crore till date, and wants to built a free hospital for the poor. But he still struggles for funds and has to depend on his resources.
These two successes owe to the power of individual initiative and not foreign funds.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Friday, June 1, 2012

FIR filed against Minister, ex-Minister in Kalahandi

The Pioneer, June 1, 2012
To find out the honesty of BJD leaders of Kalahandi regarding Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s letter to the Railway Minister on the issue of location of a railway coach factory in the State, an FIR was lodged at the Town police station here on Wednesday by lawyer and social activist Santosh Kumar Mund against State Minister Puspendra Singh Deo and Odisha TDCC chairman and former Minister Balabhadra Majhi.

The FIR alleged criminal conspiracy on the part of the BJD leaders by forging the original document relating to the Chief Minister’s letter with an intention to mislead the media and the people.

Mund, who is also convener of the Raildaba Pratistha Kriyanusthan Committee, took the step a day after a Press conference was called by Kalahandi Congress MP Bhakta Charan Das on the railway coach factory issue. Das had accused the BJD leaders of forging the document signed by the Chief Minister and circulating its copies to mediapersons at a Press meet on May 6.

Das showed the video footage of Parliament discussions where Railway Minister Mukul Roy had clearly indicated the State Government’s apathy towards Kalahandi on the issue of location of the proposed coach factory in his speech on March 22, 2012.

The FIR said that while presenting the Railway Budget of 2010-11, then Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee had announced in the Parliament that a railway wagon factory would be established either in Bhubaneswar or in Kalahandi district, the Odisha Government submitted a proposal to the Railway Minister for establishment of the factory at Sitalapalli of Ganjam district.

Knowing this apathetic attitude of the State Government, the people of Kalahandi raised voice against the Naveen Patnaik Government wearing black badges for seven days under the leadership of the Congress, the FIR pointed out.

The FIR said both the BJD leaders, Singh Deo and Manjhi, who are public servants, claimed at their Press meet that the Chief Minister had written a letter to then Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi dated December 28 last year where the CM had submitted a proposal for two rail wagon factories, one at Sitalapalli of Ganjam and the other at Narla of Kalahandi. But in the original letter such a proposal in favour of Kalahandi was mentioned nowhere by the CM.

Mund alleged that both Puspendra Singh Deo and Balabhadra Majhi in order to mislead and cheat the people conspired together and forged the CM’s original letter after inserting some paragraphs in it and used the concocted letter as genuine knowing very well that it was a forged one and thereby they committed offence and cheated the people as well as the Press.

Mund has demanded that the police inquire into the matter and take legal action against both the leaders in the interest of justice.

Kalahandi sees total bandh

The Pioneer, June 1, 2012
The bandh called by the NDA at the Central level and the ruling BJD and other none-Congress parties in the State on Thursday in protest against petrol price hike by the Congress-led UPA Government, was successful in Kalahandi district with markets, business establishments, banks, Government offices and road transport communications remaining closed since morning.

Besides the BJD and the BJP, the protest move was supported by CPI, RJDand Samajbadi Party who took out a rally holding banners across the town here giving slogans against the UPA Government.The protesters burnt tyres on the main road of the town and gave slogans against the Central Government.

CPI leader Dama Behera threatened to go for mass agitation if petrol price hike was not rolledback.

All nationalised banks, ATMs, courts and Government offices remained closed for the entire day and commuters suffered as the buses did not ply.

Similarly, in other parts of the district like Junagarh, Kesinga, Dharmagarh and other blocks, markets wore a deserted look. However, no untoward incidents were reported.