BHUBANESWAR: With the State Government coming under attack for increasing crime against women in Odisha, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday announced in the Assembly that nobody involved in such incidents will be spared.
“Our Government believes in taking tough and timely action in incidents of crime against women and children,” Naveen said while replying to the discussion on motion of thanks on Governor’s address.
The Chief Minister said to empower women of the State further, the Government will bring down the rate of interest on loans to women self-help groups (SHGs). The Mission Shakti has satisfactorily worked towards economic and social emancipation since its inception, he said.
The Chief Minister’s reply, however, had no mention of the scams in which several ruling party politicians are allegedly involved and problems of the people, including intake of contaminated drinking water leading to outbreak of jaundice in several towns.
Congress members staged a walkout in protest as the Chief Minister avoided all issues raised by them. “The Chief Minister is repeating the Governor’s address without replying to our queries,” Leader of the Opposition Narasingh Mishra said while leading the walkout.
Announcing that the State Government is going to introduce a holistic Odisha Food Security Act very shortly, the Chief Minister said it will lay emphasis on agricultural production, marketing and equitable distribution of foodgrains to all with focus on tribals, slum dwellers and other vulnerable sections of society.
Repeating the theme of Central neglect, the Chief Minister said injustice has been done to the State. Stating that Odisha faces maximum number of natural disasters as compared to other States, Naveen said huge resources are required to rebuild lives and livelihood. “It is in this backdrop that Odisha deserves special category status,” he said.
Though several schemes are languishing due to resource crunch, the Chief Minister claimed that there has been a manifold increase in outlay on such schemes and projects have been put on fast track. He said in order to increase productivity, additional irrigation potential of 10 lakh hectares will be created within next five years at a cost of `5000 crore each year.
For substantially improving health service and infrastructure, the State Government has decided to open five more medical colleges at Puri, Baripada, Balasore, Koraput and Balangir, Naveen said and added that there is a proposal to add 140 more ambulances under ‘Emergency Medical Ambulance Service’.