The Statesman, March 25, 2015
Union Minister of Tribal Affairs, Jual Oram, on Thursday blamed the state BJD government for the shifting of the railway wagon repair from Kalahandi district to Vishakapatnam alleging that chief minister Naveen Patnaik delayed the project as he wanted it to be established in his home district Ganjam.
The railways has shifted the proposed wagon repair factory, announced by the previous UPA government, from Kalahandi district to Vishakapatnam on grounds of feasibility and operational problems.
The railway sources stated that water availability was a problem at the proposed site in Kalahandi district and the empty wagons would have to travel a long distance to the site causing traffic related issues.
The ruling BJD had cried foul and charged that it was yet another instance of ‘central neglect’ while the Congress had accused both the Centre and the state for the failure to establish the project in Kalahandi.
The BJD government delayed in providing land and it did not take interest in the project, charged the Congress.
Leader of Opposition, Narasingha Mishra said all the 20 MPs in the Lok Sabha had remained silent when the railway budget was discussed.
They did not raise this issue at all, he charged. The Congress stalled proceedings of the Assembly for two days , before the government moved a motion which was adopted stating that a memorandum will be submitted to the railway minister in this regard.
The state Congress has also decided to organize a Kalahandi bandh on 6 April while the BJD plans to hold protest meetings, though it has not finalized the date.
Congress leaders charged that the BJD cannot raise any issue against the BJP because of the sword of the CBI hanging on several ruling party leaders in the chit fund scam.
The two parties have entered into an understanding of protecting each other, alleged the Congress.
On Thursday Oram reacted to the accusations saying by raising the wagon factory demand for Ganjam district, the CM had neglected the wagon repair project in Kalahandi district.
The CM and the state government did not take interest to expedite land and water related requirements for the Kalahandi project and this led to shifting of the proposed factory to Vizag, he said.