Berhampur: Union Minister Prakash Javadekar ruled out today the BJP going soft on the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) in Odisha for the 2019 Assembly polls after its support to the NDA candidate in the Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman election.
The senior BJP leader accused the Naveen Patnaik government of having destroyed democracy in the state by introducing “officer raj” and asserted that his party would fight the BJD in the state Assembly and Lok Sabha polls due next year.
“Several parties supported the NDA candidate in the election for Rajya Sabha deputy chairman post like the BJD. It does not mean, the BJP is going to soften its stand towards BJD,” the Union HRD minister told reporters here.
Hitting out at the BJD government, Javedakar said the regional party has destroyed democracy and introduced “officer raj” where bureaucrats are taking the decisions.
“Bureaucrats are utilised as a tool to work in favour of the BJD. There is no democracy in the state. The government is working only for the BJD,” he said.
The Union Minister also accused officers of showing favouritism in selection of beneficiaries under the National Food Security Mission (NFSM), Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojna (PMAY), social security schemes and even construction of toilets.
Dubbing the BJD regime as “pc” (percentage) government, Javadekar said, “The contractors are BJD workers and corruption is rampant everywhere as commission is given for different works.”
“As per information given by party functionaries from all seven segments in the Berhampur parliamentary constituency in the last two days, there was a cut of Rs 2,000 for each toilet in the rural areas,” he claimed
Claiming that the people of Odisha are “disillusioned” and “fed up” with the BJD regime for its “misrule” and “backwardness” in the state, he said people are “impressed” with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his development model.
Javadekar also slammed the BJD government for failing to return money to poor investors who were duped by chit-fund firms in the state.
“I have asked the partymen to collect applications from victims of chit-fund scam and to dispatch it to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik for refund,” he said.
Voicing confidence about the BJP forming government in Odisha, Javadekar claimed the party would also win many Lok Sabha seats and party workers have been given tasks on a daily basis in order to achieve this goal.
BJP workers would work as per specified tasks entrusted to them in order to achieve the target of winning 120 of the 147 assembly seats in the state, he said.
During his visit, Javadekar held discussions with partymen from Berhampur, Chhatrapur, Chikiti, Gopalpur, Mohana, Digapahandi and Paralakhemundi Assembly segments.
Reacting to Javadekar’s claims, BJD spokesperson Sasmit Patra said the BJP leaders are “worried” after witnessing the pace of development in Odisha under the leadership of Patnaik.