'Congress would've been wiped out in Odisha over Natarajan remark'

Dubbing Congress as "anti- Odisha", state Finance Minister Pradip Kumar Amat on Saturday said the country's biggest political party would have been wiped out had former union minister Jayanthi Natarajan revealed the Niyamgiri episode prior to 2014 general elections.

Bhubaneswar: Dubbing Congress as "anti- Odisha", state Finance Minister Pradip Kumar Amat on Saturday said the country's biggest political party would have been wiped out had former union minister Jayanthi Natarajan revealed the Niyamgiri episode prior to 2014 general elections.

"The Congress would not have won a single assembly seat in Odisha in the last elections had Natarajan revealed party vice-president Rahul Gandhi's tactical move to stop mining atop Niyamgiri Hills," Amat said while replying to the general discussion on the state Budget 2015-16.

Quoting Natarajan, the finance minister pointed out that Rahul Gandhi had told her (the then environment minister) not to grant environmental clearance to the proposed mining project in Niyamgiri Hills.

Amat accused Gandhi and the Congress of working against Odisha's development by throttling projects in the state.

"They (Congress) would have faced the situation of Delhi in Odisha," the finance minister said, adding that Rahul Gandhi's attitude clearly indicated that he worked against the interest of the state.

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