**Bhubaneswar:** In a major development, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday sacked senior BJD leader and Agriculture Minister Damodar Rout from the Cabinet.
The news came as a shocker for motor mouth Rout who has been known for his controversial remarks on repeated occasions.
“I strongly disapprove of anyone who makes derogatory remarks against any caste, creed and religion. I dismiss Dr Rout from the Council of Ministers. A letter has been sent this evening to the Honourable Governor to accept this dismissal,” the Chief Minister said.
While Rout is known for his impromptu remarks on several issues, according to sources his recent opinion-making on Brahmins, Anganwadi workers and Farmer issues, put the Naveen Government in an embarrassing situation.
Few days back, Rout at a cultural meeting in Malkangiri addressed Brahmins are ‘beggars.’ The statement evoked sharp reaction from all sections of the society. The Mukti Mandap Brahmins Samaj had urged the Chief Minister to intervene and take strict action against Rout.
As the ‘Brahmin-beggar’ jibe of Rout has stirred the hornet’s nest, especially in Puri, and BJD is going to organise its 20th Foundation Day in the pilgrim city on December 26, Naveen took strong exception of the remarks and tried to do damage control of the whole issue.