Orissa assembly disrupted again over university issue

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

BHUBANESWAR - Orissa’s opposition parties disrupted assembly proceedings for the second consecutive day Wednesday demanding the resignation of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik over land acquisition for a proposed university.

The trouble over land acquisition for Vedanta university started during the question hour when Leader of Opposition Bhupinder Singh of Congress raised the issue. Soon, he was joined by others.

Carrying posters, the opposition members rushed to Speaker Pradip Amat’s podium and shouted slogans against the government forcing the speaker to adjourn the house.

As the opposition remained adamant even after several adjournments, the speaker adjourned the house for the day. The house conducted business for less then 20 minutes during the day.

The speaker later called an all-party meeting to resolve the stalemate.

The Orissa High Court earlier this month quashed the process of land acquisition for the proposed Vedanta University. It directed the authorities to return the acquired land to their owners.

The university, proposed to be set up by the Anil Agarwal Foundation promoted by NRI industrialist and Britain-based Vedanta Resources chairman Anil Agarwal, was to come up on over 6,000 acres of land with a phased investment of Rs.150 billion ($3.5 billion) near the Konark-Puri marine drive, some 60 km from here.

After the high court’s direction to return the land acquired for the proposed university, the chief minister said the government would examine the decision and take appropriate action.

Filed under: Politics

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