Budget Session from tomorrow, set to be stormy

Bhubaneswar: The Budget Session of the Odisha Assembly, beginning on Tuesday, is likely to be stormy with the opposition deciding to raise several issues, including the drinking water scarcity, farmers’ problems to corner the State Government.

The ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD), on the other hand, has decided to raise the special category status demand and the Mahanadi and Polavaram water disputes to take on the opposition Congress and BJP in the House.

After the BJD legislature party meeting, Chief Minister and BJD president Naveen Patnaik said the party is prepared to discuss the issues brought up by the opposition.

“In the forthcoming assembly session, we will raise different vital issues. We will raise the issue of special category status demand, Mahanadi tribunal and other important issues,” said Patnaik, adding that the party is prepared to discuss the issues raised by the opposition in the floor of the House.

Last week, the Congress held its legislature party meeting to chalk out the strategy for the Assembly Session, while the BJP MLAs who met today decided to raise several issues including drinking water problem, pest menace, farmer suicides and other issues affecting the common people.

“The State Government has failed to ensure adequate drinking water. PC culture is all pervasive in the State. We will also demand a discussion on the inquiry commission report on the Gumudumah encounter. Besides, there are other issues which we will raise during the Assembly Session,” said BJP MLA Pradip Purohit after the meeting.

Finance Minister Shashi Bhusan Behera would present the annual budget for 2018-19 on March 23, which would be the last full budget before the next Assembly and Lok Sabha elections, scheduled in 2019.

The first phase of the House will run till March 31. The second phase is schedule to start from April 11 and end on May 5.

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