BHUBANESWAR: With the BJP adopting an aggressive posture over the funding of Biju Janata Dal (BJD), Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Sunday asked party’s observers for blocks and urban local bodies (ULBs) to make the organisation at the grassroots more effective to counter the opposition campaign.
Addressing the concluding session of a two-day workshop of BJD’s observers for blocks and ULBs, Naveen advised them to make the people aware about the development works of the Government during the last 17 years to tackle the campaign launched by Opposition political parties.
The BJD will launch two programmes, ‘Ama Gaon Ama Bikas’ and ‘Ama Sahara Ama Unnati’ from the first week of August to counter the booth-level exercise launched by the BJP recently. The workshop discussed 21 issues, including development work undertaken by the State Government and how to make them successful.
The Chief Minister asked the observers to make party’s committees at the ward, panchayat and ULB levels more active so that more people will be involved in the BJD’s yearly padayatra programme in October. Several senior leaders of the party addressed the workshop which was attended by nearly 600 observers.
Finance Minister Sashibhusan Behera informed the observers about the drastic cut in Central assistance for several welfare schemes while vice-president Debi Prasad Mishra criticised the Centre for not responding to the demands of the State Government on the Mahanadi river water dispute between Odisha and Chhattisgarh and unilateral construction of Polavaram dam project by Andhra Pradesh Government.
Former minister Ranendra Pratap Swain said the Centre has ignored the demand for special category state status to Odisha since long and advised the observers to make the people aware about the issue at the grassroots level.
Several senior leaders, including party vice-president Prasanna Acharya, Rajya Sabha member Pratap Deb, former Rajya Sabha member Bhupinder Singh, Urban Development Minister Niranjan Pujari, Minister of State for Tourism and Culture Ashok Panda, party MLA Debasis Samantray, former ministers Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak and Arun Sahu also addressed the observers.