BHUBANESHWAR: Stating that chief minister Naveen Patnaik should admit that his support to the demonetisation decision was wrong, opposition Congress today requested the Assembly secretariat to pay MLAs through cash instead of cheque.
"Whatever we get as salary or remuneration should be paid in cash instead of cheque. Otherwise, the MLAs may have to run to banks several times as there is restriction on the amount of withdrawal," Leader of Opposition Narasingha Mishra said during his speech on the Odisha Appropriation (No.2) Bill, 2016.
Initiating the discussion, Mishra said finance minister Pradip Kumar Amat has admitted that the demonetisation would have an adverse impact on the state's economy. "It was the chief minister who immediately supported Prime Minister Modi's demonetisation scheme. Now at least say on the floor of the House that your view on the scheme is wrong," he said.
The chief minister had described the Prime Minister's decision as a bold move on November 9.
Mishra said the poor in the state have suffered a lot due to the demonetisation move and agriculture, trade and commerce have been badly hit in the process. Small traders and marginal farmers were the worst victims of demonetisation, he added.
Though farmers were paid crop insurance benefits one year after crop loss, they are not able to draw the amount from their accounts due to shortage of cash in banks, he said and added this has led to illegal money lending in the rural pockets of the state.
Coming down heavily on the chief minister, Mishra said the government has failed to provide safe drinking water to people, education to the children, minimum health care to women and children and water for irrigation.
Alleging that the government is not responding to the queries of the opposition, Mishra said even the chief minister has the habit of running away from the House. "The CM has created a world record for not participating in debates or giving his views on any issue.
Though the CM claims he is prepared to answer the Opposition in the House, he runs away at the time of reply," he said.
The Leader of Opposition alleged that the is responsible for issues like Mahanadi and Polavaram. The state government has failed to stop the Polavaram project which is likely to be completed by 2020, Mishra said, alleging that the entire state suffered due to wrong policies of the Chief Minister.