Members demand removal of the chairman and expert members of the Western Orissa Development Council (WODC); Orissa government says no way

March 18, 2010 at 8:03 am Leave a comment

Following is a report from http://www.expressbuzz.com

The Congress members on Wednesday stalled the proceedings of the Assembly demanding removal of chairman and expert members of the Western Orissa Development Council (WODC) over the `usurpation’ of powers.

The members rushed into the well demanding a ruling by Speaker Pradip Amat on special mentions leading to several adjournments.Describing the members as experts in taking percentage and cuts from projects and deciding on tenders, the legislators said they have emerged parallel power centres in their constituencies.

Raising the issue, Santosh Singh Saluja (Cong) alleged that violating all Acts, the expert members have submitted 257 project proposals. These members, who were defeated in the last Assembly and Lok Sabha elections as BJD candidates, are also reviewing the projects at block offices. He also mentioned about two defeated BJD MLA candidates from Atabira and Patnagarh constituencies and one from Bargarh Lok Sabha seat.Demanding immediate halt to the infringement of power of the MLAs, Saluja demanded that all proposals given by the expert members be cancelled and they be immediately removed.

His party colleague Naba Kishore Das alleged that it is a well thought out plan of the BJD to create trouble for the Opposition MLAs in their constituencies by promoting the expert members through WODC.Surendra Singh Bhoi announced that he will stage dharna in the House during the next session if the Government did not remove the chairman and the expert members immediately. Gobardhan Das wanted to know details about the expenditure incurred by the chairman and expert members.Nihar Ranjan Mahanand and Subal Sahu also raised the issue and wanted their dismissal.

Normalcy returned after the Speaker directed Planning and Coordination Minister A U Singhdeo to make a statement. The minister said that the Act does not give preferential treatment to any category of members.He clarified that 1,737 proposals worth Rs 63.42 cr from MLAs were accepted against 3.97 cr from expert members. While the proposals from MLAs constitute 63.42 percent of the funds, those from the expert members are only half a percent of the accepted proposals.He said that members can review work anywhere in WODC.

Entry filed under: Athmallik, Balangir, Bargarh, Boudh, Deogarh, Developmental schemes for districts, Jharsuguda, Kalahandi, Nuapada, Region watch, Sambalpur, Subarnapur, Sundergarh, Western Odisha development council.

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