Bhubaneswar, Mar 28 (PTI) The state government today agreed to give a statement in the Assembly over the “delay” in appointment of a Lokayukta despite the Odisha Lokayukta Act being passed in the House four years ago.
The government’s readiness to make the statement tomorrow was conveyed at an all-party meeting convened by Speaker Pradip Kumar Amat here.
The assembly has been paralysed by the opposition for two days on the demand for a ruling from the speaker asking the government to make a statement on the reasons behind the delay in the Lokayukta appointment.
“We have requested the opposition to cooperate in running the House. The government will give a statement on the Lokayukta matter tomorrow,” Government Chief Whip Amar Prasad Satpathy told reporters.
The meeting was attended by Parliamentary Affairs Minister B K Arukha, Satpathy, Leader of Opposition Narasingha Mishra, Opposition Chief Whip Taraprasad Bahinipati of Congress and BJPLP leader K V Singhdeo.
Mishra and Singhdeo said there was a fruitful discussion at the all-party meeting and the government had agreed to give a statement in the House tomorrow.
Earlier in the day, the opposition Congress and BJP members had rushed into the Well of the House during the Question Hour waving placards criticising the “adamant attitude” of the Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik against the appointment of Lokayukta.
After failing to pacify the opposition members, the speaker announced the adjournment of the House several times and finally till tomorrow.
BJP leader Pradeep Purohit said the Odisha Lokayukta Bill was passed in the House in 2014 and the chief minister had announced that it would be implemented within six months.
“Now, let the chief minister give a clarification in the House as to why there is an inordinate delay in the enactment of the bill. Let the opposition know what problems the state government has in the appointment of the Lokayukta,” he said.
Senior BJD leader Damodar Rout, criticising the opposition, claimed, “Usually the people of Odisha eagerly await the Question Hour where their problems and solutions are discussed. But the manner in which the opposition members are trying to stall the Assembly’s proceedings reflects their irresponsible behaviour.” The opposition should refrain from its “selfish motives” and allow the House to run smoothly, Rout added.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.