A review meeting on Centre's developmental projects in Odisha for which Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan was present, had to be cancelled here Saturday as no state government official turned up for it.
Pradhan, the petroleum minister, kept waiting for hours at the state guest house awaiting the arrival of Odisha government officers.
"My office had invited the state government for the review meeting. The chief secretary did not come. May be he was busy in some other work, bigger than this meeting," he told reporters.
Stating that officials of GAIL and NHAI were also present for the meeting, Pradhan said several development and infrastructure projects of the petroleum, railways departments, besides NHAI and some other companies were pending.
"Today's meeting was important as the state government's approval is needed at different stages. These projects are important for the development of Odisha, may be the chief minister is not aware of it. Anyway, I will ask why the Odisha government did not give priority to this meeting," a visibly angry Pradhan said.
None from the state government agreed to speak on the reason behind Chief Secretary A P Padhi not attending the Union minister's meeting, considered significant as most of the projects are facing land acquisition problems and clearances were pending with the state government.
Pradhan said development projects of Rs 1,36,417 crore have been affected due to a lack of proper support and cooperation from the state government.
Criticising the government's attitude, he said he had written 62 letters to the state government, including 44 since 2017. He got acknowledgement for only one letter.
"So may I call the Odisha government insensitive, paralysed, ineffective and liar?" the Union minister said sarcastically, and alleged that the central public sector undertakings' projects are being neglected while the state administration was giving priority to private companies.
Pradhan said different central government projects, including Rs 51,395 crore in the petroleum sector, Rs 56,563 crore in road transport, Rs 12,286 crore in railways, Rs 15,413 crore investment in non-petroleum sector and Rs 560 crore in healthcare are being implemented in the state.
He alleged he expansion work of Paradip refinery and the proposed plastic park projects are not progressing due to the state government's non-cooperation.
Paradip could have been the next industrial hub like Jurong of Singapore but for the non-cooperation of the Odisha government, he said.
The proposed textile park in Bhadrak district was suffering as the state government did not provide the land required for the purpose, he added.
He blamed the alleged non-cooperation by the state government for the lack of progress of the proposed coastal highway project in Odisha.
"I have tried my best to begin work of the coastal highway project. But, no progress has been made so far. The state government has now again asked for changes in alignment on Puri-Satapada and Konark-Astarang routes after agreeing on them earlier," Pradhan said.
He said the Rs 10,000-crore coastal highway project will provide vital commercial channels to five ports, IT hubs, electronic park, textile parks and sea food parks lying on the route.
The Union minister also alleged that railway projects worth Rs 12,286 crore in the state have been stalled as they face major problems like land acquisition, forest clearance and law and order problems.
(This article has not been edited by Zeebiz editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
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