Congress holds rally seeking Patnaik’s ouster

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

BHUBANESWAR - More than 50,000 Congress workers Tuesday held a rally here demanding the ouster of Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik over the Vedanta University controversy and growing corruption.

The workers marched on the streets, shouting slogans against the state government and converged outside the state assembly.

Dancing to the beat of drums, some activists also burned effigies of Patnaik.

Congress leaders who addressed the rally include union Minister for Fertiliser and Chemicals Srikant Jena and Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs V. Narayanasamy, state Congress president K.P. Singh Deo and former chief minister Giridhar Gomang.

The leaders criticised Naveen Patnaik over issues like Vedanta University, mining scams, law and order situation and corruption.

“Orissa government has been accusing the centre of neglecting the state. We are here to tell that it is not true,” Narayansamy said.

Accusing the state government of hiding facts, he said the centre has always protected the interest of Orissa and its people.

K.P. Singh Deo said Congress will organise such rallies in every district, block and village of the state.

“Patnaik has lost moral ground to remain in power after the recent judgment by the high court,” senior Congress leader and MP Bhakta Charan Das said, referring to the November decision of a division bench of the Orissa High Court quashing the land acquisition for the proposed Vedanta University near the Konark-Puri marine drive.

Opposition parties, including Bharatiya Janata Party, have been demanding Patnaik’s resignation over the Vedanta controversy.

Filed under: Politics

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