Patnaik blames UPA for miseries of Orissa

In a fresh attack on the Centre, Chief minister Naveen Patnaik on Saturday accused the UPA government of not giving Orissa its dues.

Last Updated: Nov 27, 2010, 19:55 PM IST

Berhampur (Orissa): In a fresh attack on the Centre, Chief minister Naveen Patnaik on Saturday accused the UPA government of not giving Orissa its dues.

"Due to non-revision of coal royalty, Orissa lost about Rs 70,000 crore from 2004 and 2009. The state could have got Rs 25,000 crore annually, if the royalty on coal was revised regularly," Patnaik told the ruling BJD`s Save Orissa Samabesh held at Hinjili here in Ganjam district.

Although the state was abundant in mineral resources, it had no power to utilise them, he said, adding that poverty could be wiped out if state could utilise its minerals.

Patnaik also accused Prime Minister Manmohan Singh of not giving attention to the state even during natural calamities. Without naming Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi for his remark at a recent rally that he was a `sipahi` for tribals, he said, "The Congress is shedding crocodile tears for tribals and dalits."

He vowed that the people of the state would fight for their dues like coal royalty, share of electricity from the central pool and central assistance during natural disasters, besides the interest of tribals and dalits.

Referring to the proposed Polavaram multi-purpose project in Andhra Pradesh, he said while the Centre was helping Andhra Pradesh, it was ignoring the interest of tribals of Malkanagiri district in Orissa.

"The Polavaram project will submerge houses and land of
tribals in Malkangiri," he said.

Patnaik claimed the BJD as a regional outfit, was looking
after the development of the state and the uplift of tribals
with its limited resources.

PTI