JAGATSINGHPUR/CUTTACK: Odisha is rice surplus now and does not need to depend on other States any more for relief and rehabilitation during natural calamities, said Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Monday.Addressing public gatherings in Paradip, Jagatsinghpur and Bari in Jajpur, Naveen accused the national BJP leaders of visiting Odisha only during elections. “Where were they when the State faced natural calamities like Hud Hud, Titili, Phailin and the Super Cyclone? They come to Odisha only to give false promises,” the BJD supremo alleged.
Recalling the 1999 Super Cyclone, he said Odisha did not have sufficient rice then and had to depend on the Centre and other States for it. Twenty years down the line, the State has reached a position where it can provide huge quantities of rice to other States in need, Naveen said.He further accused BJP leaders of not being sympathetic towards farmers of the State and ‘conspiring’ to stop the KALIA scheme. Reiterating that no one can stop KALIA, he said the State Government has already provided financial assistance to 40 lakh farmers and others will receive the second installment of `10,000 each under KALIA scheme on the day BJD forms the Government.
Stating that violence is the agenda of BJP, he flayed the saffron party for creating ‘gundaraj’ in the State like in Bihar. “But they cannot succeed in doing so and people will give them an apt reply in this General Elections,” he said adding, the national party has fielded a number of candidates with criminal antecedents.
Canvassing for BJD candidates for Paradip and Jagatsinghpur Assembly segments and Jagatsinghpur Lok Sabha constituency, Naveen announced that if BJD is voted to power, it will increase the financial aid under Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana to `10 lakh from the existing `7 lakh for women. He appealed to voters to vote for BJD MP candidate Rajshree Mallick, Jagatsinghpur MLA candidate Prasant Muduli and Paradip MLA candidate Sambit Routray.
Meanwhile, the CM’s election meeting at Sarala Road under Tirtol Assembly segment was cancelled on the day due to waterlogging in Kalia Padia ground where his chopper was to land. He was to canvass for BJD’s MLA candidate for Tirtol Bishnu Das. A section of party workers, however, said the meeting was cancelled in the last minute as an ailing Das was unable to attend it as he is undergoing treatment at Bhubaneswar. Das is yet to start campaigning in Tirtol.
At Baliapal under Bari Assembly seat in Jajpur district, Naveen questioned the BJP-led NDA Government on its promise of 10 crore jobs in five years, special category status for the State, women’s reservation bill and why crops insurance for farmers and scholarships for SC/ST students were stopped.The CM held road show from Baliapal and to Chhatia and addressed people from his hi-tech campaign bus.