Puri: The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) would hold a demonstration near the headquarters of East Coast Railway (ECoR) in Bhubaneswar March 2 to protest the Central government’s decision to take out the Waltair Railway Division from ECoR.
This was revealed by BJD leader and Brahmagiri MLA Sanjay Das Burma at a press conference in the Holy City here Friday.
“The Centre has divided the ECoR by keeping an eye on the upcoming elections in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. The bifurcation would harm the interests of Odisha. There were no justifiable grounds to divide the ECoR. We condemn this myopic move, which would affect the revenue generation capacity of ECoR,” Das Burma said.
The BJD MLA claimed that the ECoR usually provides around Rs 20,000 revenue to the Indian Railways. However, the Railway Ministry has been ignoring the interests of Odisha. “The ECoR was created after a long struggle. Now, it is facing conspiracies from several quarters,” he said.
According to Das Burma, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had opposed the bifurcation of ECoR in a letter to Railway Minister Piyush Goyal February 16, 2018. “The Chief Minister had categorically pointed out that any division of ECoR would harm the interests of Odisha. However, the Centre has ignored the cause of Odisha. It is unfortunate that Union Ministers Dharmendra Pradhan and Jual Oram have preferred to keep mum on the issue,” Das Burma alleged.
The BJD MLA said the activists of Biju Yuva Janata Dal, Biju Chhatra Janata Dal and the party’s women wing would participate in the demonstration. “We would opt for state-wide agitation and economic blockade if the Centre does not change its decision to bifurcate ECoR,” Das Burma added.
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