13 opposition parties protest against Odisha govt's management of Covid-19

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Expressing dissatisfaction at Odisha government over the management of Covid-19 cases in the state, 13 political parties from the opposition except the BJP held a demonstration here on Friday.

The political parties also submitted a memorandum to the Odisha Governor as well.

Meanwhile, Odisha Congress Committee president Niranjan Patnaik and other political parties’ representatives have been charged Rs 500 for violation of social distancing and government norms on Covid-19 during the protests against the state government.

The state Congress president said that “inefficiency in managing the Covid-19 crisis and corruption” is going on in the state.

“People in villages are suffering like anything. We have submitted a memorandum to the Governor as to what should be done for the farmers, women and other people during this time,” he added.

CPI-M leader Ali Kishor Patnaik said that the 13 parties gathered for protest are anti-BJP and anti-BJD parties.

The CPI-M leader said that the parties in the memorandum have requested the state government to act and “save the life and livelihood of the common people”.

“There are many charges of corruption against the state government on the question of purchasing masks, sanitisers and PPE kits. Huge money has been siphoned and what we have demanded is that there must be a high-level independent community to enquire on this. The state government must come out with a white paper on the expenditure incurred to meet the challenges of COVID-19,” Ali Kishor Patnaik told ANI.

Alleging that the state government a ‘propaganda-based organisation’, he said that the state government solely believes in propaganda.

“This government has expertise in publishing and publicising things -- this is a propaganda based organisation. They believe in propaganda than in real and practical work. One must learn the art of propaganda from this government. Whatever they have announced, they are not keeping their promise,” he said.

Citing the announcement wherein the state government promised to give Rs 2,000 to migrant labourers after completing 14-day quarantine period, Ali Kishor Patnaik alleged that the money has not been provided to the panchayat level.

“Why are they not distributing the money? It has not reached the panchayat level. It is propaganda that Odisha is the first state to do so. Declaring that it is the first state is one thing but the reality is something else,” he added.

AAP Odisha Convenor Nishikant Mohapatra said that the next six months for the people of the state is going to be very tough and he criticised the state government for “a lack of plan to scheme”.

“The state government has no programme for people who are suffering. The Governor has appreciated our demand and has assured us that he would do the needful at this juncture,” he said.

As per the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Odisha has a total of 5,962 Covid-19 cases in the state as of Friday.

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