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Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik’s Felicitation at State Secretariat Raises BJP’s Eyebrows


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21 August 2017

Soumya Ranjan Sahoo


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Bhubaneswar: Following celebrations at State Secretariat and Naveen Niwas here on Monday over Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik being conferred with ‘India’s Best Administrator Award’ by Outlook magazine on Friday evening in New Delhi, ruling BJD’s political bête noire BJP came down heavily on such a development on the day.

BJP’s Odisha poster boy and Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan in his media reactions sarcastically said, “Let him (Naveen Patnaik) be No 1, congratulations! But, the employees of State Secretariat, who are heaping on him greetings today, should in reciprocation be gifted by the CM with the pending 7th Pay Commission bonanza by this evening. Instead of being No 1 in lip service, should prove it practically.”

Similarly, convening a press meet at the BJP headquarters here, Odisha unit saffron party’s vice-president Sameer Mohanty lampooned, “It’s like 'Nero fiddling while Rome was burning'.”

On the contrary, BJD spokesperson and Odisha Finance Minister Sashi Bhusan Behera retorted back, “When did Dharmendra Pradhan become the advisor to the State Government? Let him refrain from advising the State Government. If at all he could assist in influencing the Centre to do its duty towards Odisha, as our State has been neglected by the Central Government, then only credit will go to him.”

Prabhat Mohanty, President, Sachivalaya Karmachari Sangh, said, “Hon’ble Chief Minister completed today his 17-year tenure. Meanwhile, Odisha has developed a lot. Lots of pro-people works have been done in the State. As the CM has been awarded as the best administrator in the nation at New Delhi, we the employees and all the citizens of Odisha are feeling very proud. Hence, we decided to felicitate him today the moment he entered the State Secretariat. It’s a moment of ample pride for us.”

Braja Nanda, President, Odisha State Karmachari Samannuya Samiti said, “The award conferred on him is not his only pride and fame, but also of one and all in Odisha. He has been able to carve a niche for Odisha in the all India level as the No 1 State. As our Chief Minister has been adjudged the ‘best administrator’, our non-gazetted employees association, an organisation of 4 lakh non-gazetted officials of the State, is also committed on the sidelines of this felicitation ceremony to realise the dream of the CM to make Odisha as the No 1 State in true letter and spirit. The CM’s dream of ‘Amari Gaon Amari Vikash Yojana’ will definitely be made fruitful. We’re all proud of our leader.”

Notably, the CM on Sunday returned home from New Delhi to a rousing reception as thousands of party workers and leaders from across the State had gathered outside the Biju Patnaik International Airport (BPIA) to congratulate him. After arriving, he had been felicitated by the crowd. Also, he paid floral tributes to the statue of Biju Patnaik at the BPIA before leaving for Naveen Niwas.

Besides, the ruling BJD had made elaborate arrangements to welcome its supremo following which hoardings and banners had been put up at various places in between the airport and Naveen Niwas.

However, owing to the Utkal Express train tragedy in UP’s Muzaffarnagar on Saturday evening, the BJD later made up its mind to celebrate it in a low key manner.

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Dharmendra Pradhan, Minister, Petroleum

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Sashi Bhusan Behera, Finance Minister, Odisha

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Prabhat Mohanty, President, Sachivalaya Karmachari Sangh, Odisha

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Braja Nanda, President, Odisha State Karmachari Samannuya Samiti