Vedanta land row: Niranjan seeks Guv’s intervention


Bhubaneswar, January 9: On a day when his party could manage only two wards in the BMC polls, former Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) chief Niranjan Patnaik decided to dampen the winning spirit of BJD by launching a fresh attack on the government raising the VedantaUniversity land scam issue.

Niranjan on Thursday accused Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik of ‘obstructing the course of justice’ in the VedantaUniversity land acquisition case. He further urged Governor S C Jamir to issue a direction to the state government to begin a preliminary enquiry by the vigilance department at the earliest.

He further demanded that an FIR must be lodged by the vigilance sleuths within a month and all the erring officials who were involved in the much discussed Vedanta land scam offence must be punished at the earliest.

It can be recalled that the then Lokpal late Justice PK Patra in 2011 had filed a special report in the Vedanta varsity case and the governor’s office had directed the ‘special report’ to be discussed in the State Assembly as per Section 13 of the Lokpal Act, 1995.

But the state government, Niranjan said unnecessary delayed action on the issue. However, after demand by the opposition, the state government had placed the report in the House with an explanation that no action can be taken on the alleged land scam row, as the matter was pending before the Supreme Court.

Terming the state government act as highly deplorable, Niranjan has reportedly wrote a letter to the Odisha Governor demanding his immediate intervention. The former OPCC president remarked in his letter that the BJD government’s compliance in the issue was ‘facile’ and ‘highly deplorable’.