Bhubaneswar, Feb 13: The count down begins for the budget session of the Odisha assembly commencing from tomorrow with the holding of an all-party meeting convened by the Speaker today to ensure smooth conduct of the proceedings.
The meeting chaired by Speaker Dr Surjya Narayan Patro was attended by Leader of Opposition Pradipta Kumar Naik, Congress Legislature Party leader Narasingha Mishra, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Bikram Keshari Arukh and senior legislators of various political parties.
The opposition BJP and Congress MLAs met today separately to chalk out their respective floor strategies during the session, commencing tomorrow. The two Opposition parties were ready with their ammunitions to launch attack on the government, while the ruling BJD decided to highlight the alleged Central neglect of Odisha as its counter strategy.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, who addressed the BJD legislators, asked them to remain present in the house and be prepared to counter the issues raised by the Opposition. “We are ready to discuss any issue raised by the Opposition”, Naveen told the media after the BJD Legislature Party meeting.
The BJP Legislature Party, which met under the chairmanship of Leader of Opposition Pradipta Naik, decided to raise various burning issues to corner the government. “We will mainly raise the issues of deteriorating law and order, rising crime against women, reservation, irregularities in the housing schemes, distress sale of paddy and other agricultural produces and delay in land acquisition for railway project”, said Opposition chief whip Mohan Charan Majhi.
Congress MLAs will also highlight the law and order issue, price rise of essential commodities and farmers’ issues, said senior Congress MLA Tara Prasad Bahinipati.
Finance Minister Niranjan Pujari will present the annual budget for the 2020-2021 financial year on February 18.
The budget session will have 31 working days in two phases. There will be a break in between the two phases. The general discussion on the budget will be held in the first phase.
Director General of Police, Abhay reviewed the security arrangements for the ensuing assembly session. There will be a three-layered security cover, said the DGP.
It was decided that more CCTV cameras would be installed this time in and around the state assembly as an enhanced security measure.