Orissa High Court notice to state on rural infra development scheme
Senior advocate Pitambar Acharya represented the petitioners.
CUTTACK: Orissa High Court has issued notice to the state government on a petition challenging the process of implementation of the ‘Ama Odisha, Nabin Odisha’ (Our Odisha, New Odisha) scheme, introduced on July 11, 2023. While issuing the notice on Tuesday, the single judge bench of Justice Biswanath Rath said the petition involves a serious allegation on the working out of schemes like that of Ama Odisha, Nabin Odisha without involvement of panchayats and even without involvement of gram sabhas ultimately frustrating the purpose behind creation of three-tier governance.
While fixing September 27 for further consideration of the matter, the bench issued notices to the collector and district magistrate (Balasore) and district panchayat officer (Balasore) to file counter affidavits by then. Justice Rath further as an interim measure directed the authorities to execute the works under the scheme keeping in view the best interest of the panchayats and in practical involvement of gram sabhas, as ultimately works likely to be undertaken is in the larger interest of people in the gram panchayat involved.
The petition was filed by Nagendra Kumar Singha, and eight other elected sarpanchs of gram panchayats under Basta block of Balasore district alleging the state government was purportedly implementing the scheme through their executive functionaries, bypassing the gram panchayats. Senior advocate Pitambar Acharya represented the petitioners.