Parliament Session: BJD to demand ‘special category status’ for Odisha

Bhubaneswar (Odisha): Biju Janata Dal (BJD) Members of Parliament (MPs) have decided to raise the issue of ‘special category status’ for Odisha during the Winter Session of Parliament, which commences on December 11.

The decision was taken on Sunday in the BJD Parliamentary Party meeting here, which was held under the leadership of party president and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. BJP MPs will also raise the issue of 33 per cent reservation for women in the Lok Sabha and state legislatures.

The BJD meeting also decided to raise the funding pattern for the scholarship given to Backward Classes students, Polavaram project, Chhattisgarh barrage on river Mahanadi, assistance and relief for cyclone Titli affected people and state farmers’ problems.

“By raising these important issues during the coming Winter Session of Parliament, BJD wants to highlight the negligent attitude of Central government towards Odisha,” he said, adding that the BJD opposes the Centre’s statement that the special category status could not be accorded to any state. “However, BJD feels the Centre can rework on the norms as Odisha deserves to get special category status,” BJD spokesman and MP Pratap Dev told ANI.

It is worth mentioning that states like Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Sikkim enjoy the ‘special category’ status. Some of the features required to get a special status for a state include low population, difficult and hilly terrain, infrastructural and economic backwardness.