Bhubaneswar: Orissa Chief Minister Naveen
Patnaik today intervened in a spat between between Agriculture
minister Damodar Rout and party MP both of whom are said to
be close to him.
"I will look into the matter. That`s all I have to say
for the time being," Patnaik told reporters here.
Both Rout who served in the cabinet of legendary Biju
Patnaik, the father of Naveen Patnaik and Mohapatra have been
key advisor to the Chief Minister for the last decade.
The spat sparked off when Mohapatra announced last
week that the chief minister would appraise the performance of
ministers on the basis of competence for continuance in the
Without naming Mohapatra, Rout yesterday said "the
performance of a minister can only be appraised by the chief
minister and the people of the state. No third person has any
business on the subject."
Mohapatra said, "many in the past have questioned my
position in the party and also criticised me. Whoever works in
an organisation is bound to ruffle some feathers."
To this Rout retorted "that does not mean he should be
projected as a power centre and other leaders treated as
Stating that there could not be two power centres in
the BJD, Rout said leadership should be `absolute` in a
"It is the Chief Minister`s prerogative to assess the
performance of ministers and none else has the power, the Rout