As many as 42 social outfits including Koshal Kranti Dal (KKD) have called for Western Odisha bandh on August 26 demanding separate Koshal state. This was decided at a meeting here on Sunday.
Chairman of the central committee of KKD Pramod Mishra said the bandh is the first step in the series of agitations that they have planned.
“During the bandh, we will make sure that business establishments, Government offices and educational institutions remain closed. Vehicular traffic will also be paralysed,” he said. He also appealed to political leaders of the region to support their cause.
General secretary of the Balangir Lekhak Parishad Gagan Mohanty said his organisation would extend support to the cause as it has been fighting for separate Koshal state since 1984.
On Friday, several organisations led by KKD staged rail roko at different places. Working president of KKD BN Mishra said a delegation will soon proceed to New Delhi to meet President Pranab Mukherjee on the issue.
“Koshalanchal has its own identity. Its culture and language are different from rest of Odisha. Formation of Koshal state will solve many problems and the area will be freed from poverty and malnutrition,” he said.
Mishra further said regional imbalance is the main cause of backwardness of western Odisha. It is unfortunate that successive State Governments have failed to reduce the widening gap, he added.
On August 3, the KKD had staged road blockade and a signature campaign has been launched since July 15 on the issue.
The KKD has decided to collect one crore signatures and hand it over to the President along with a memorandum to press their long pending demand.