Bhubaneswar: Puri MP and BJD leader in the Lok Sabha Pinaki Misra has outrightly denied having told lies with regard to construction work undertaken by the Odisha government near Puri Jagannath temple in the Parliament.
Misra threw an open challenge to the BJP to bring a breach of privilege motion against him in the Lok Sabha.
“It’s a very sad thing for the last two days BJP’s troll army (I call them troll goonda) and a section of journalists (I won’t call them journalists or news channels as their owners who are politicians are channelizing their political frustration through them by opposing the BJD) have been alleging that I have lied in the Lok Sabha. Today I am challenging them openly if they have the guts they should under rule 233(A) of the Rules and Procedures of Conduct of Business in Lok Sabha they can complain to the Lok Sabha Speaker that I have lied in the House and I have waived parliamentary privilege. I am challenging them,” said Misra.
Misra informed that he had told in the Lok Sabha that the BJD never takes any step against the law and that is the strict instruction of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and he shall work in conformity with the law for the whole of his life.
That is the reason why people have elected him as their CM for five terms, he added.
“I have the NOC issued by the National Monument Authority (NMA) on 4th September 2021 which I had told in the House,” said Misra.
Quoting from the NOC Misra said, “After examination of the case it is noted that the Authority has no objection in strict compliance of AAMASR Act, 1958 section 2(DC) to execution of the following works in the prohibited area namely, cloakroom, mini cloakroom, shelter pavilion, female toilet, male toilet, sevayat toilet, electrical room and pavement area including a place to stand for reaching the toilets and the sanctum sanctorum that are permitted under the exception clause to the definition of ‘construction’ as given in the abovementioned section. Therefore, this is a NOC which I had told in the House”.
The BJD MP further informed that the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) Director General (DG) has himself visited the site in March.
“Since these amenities are required for the devotees it was agreed that this may be allowed. ASI would work in coordination with the State government on design so there is no visual impact on the main temple,” said Misra quoting from the site visit note of the ASI DG.
The BJD leader termed it as cheap politics of the BJP after their dismal performance both in the recently concluded panchayat and urban local body polls in the State.
BJP MP from Bhubaneswar Aparajita Sarangi raised apprehensions in the Lok Sabha on Thursday over the threat to the Jagannath temple due to the digging of deep pits close to the temple as part of the Sri Jagannath Temple Parikrama project (Heritage Corridor project).
Sarangi had sought the Union Culture Ministry’s intervention to halt the digging works around the Sri Jagannath temple being done as part of the heritage corridor project. She had called the construction work illegal.