Uproar in Odisha Assembly over Railway project shift from Kalahandi

Assembly Committee to meet Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu over Narla Wagon Repair unit to Andhra Pradesh

Odisha AssemblyBhubaneswar: The Odisha Assembly on Tuesday passed a unanimous resolution opposing shifting of the proposed wagon repair workshop from Kalahandi to Andhra Pradesh.

After a special discussion on the Railway Board’s decision to move the project out of Odisha, the assembly decided that a house committee will meet railways minister Suresh Prabhu and submit a memorandum seeking to reconsider the decision, commerce and transport minister Ramesh Chandra Majhi said.

Majhi said the state government will provide all required infrastructure for the project to retain it here.

Speaker Niranjan Pujari allowed special discussion on the issue post launch as members across party-lines raised the demand stalling the assembly proceedings for the second consecutive day.

Soon after the house convened at 10.30 am, Congress members demanded a special discussion and jumped into the well of the house. While BJD members supported the move and raised anti-Centre slogans standing from their seats, the BJP members also demanded discussion to clarify the party position. The speaker was forced to adjourn the proceedings till 12.05 pm. When the house reconvened, the members created ruckus again. The speaker then adjourned the house till 3 pm and decided for a motion during an all-party meeting.

Ever since an RTI reply obtained by Balangir native Hemanta Panda from the East Coast Railway became public that the proposed workshop in Kalahandi has been shifted to Visakhapatnam by Railway Board for administrative reasons on Sunday, various political parties are strongly opposing the decision.

The political parties passed the blame to each other behind the Railways’ move. While BJD described the Railways’ decision as yet another instance of Central neglect to Odisha, Congress found faults with both the NDA government at the Centre and the BJD government here. The BJP said the BJD government failed to provide land in time and facilitate water required for the project.

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