BHUBANESWAR: The Odisha Police today detained five members of the National Students' Union of India (NSUI), the students wing of Congress party, who attempted to reach Naveen Niwas, the residence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, to "teach" him the Odia language.
Protesting against the Chief Minister's alleged lack of knowledge of the language, the NSUI members led by its state unit president Itish Pradhan, staged a demonstration before police detained them near Naveen Niwas.
They marched to the Chief Minister's residence holding Odia language primer 'Chhabila Madhu Barnabodha', chalk, duster, pen, handwriting pads, and other stuff.
Terming it a "shame" for the state that its Chief Minister does not know Odia, the NSUI leaders said they would continue the agitation till Patnaik learns the language. "It is a disgrace that even after 15 years of service as the Chief Minister, Patnaik can't speak the language of the state. It is obvious that he doesn’t care about implementation of Odia as the official language of the state." Pradhan said.
The ruling BJD, however, didn't take the matter seriously. As the NSUI had already lost its credibility in the state, they are indulging in such exercise to get publicity, said BJD student wing president Byamakesh Ray, also an MLA.
NSUI workers had yesterday also clashed with the police while taking out such a rally on the occasion of Utkal Diwas.