Report by Suchismita Sahoo, Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today writes to Union Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal over slash in budget allocation for Odisha. In his letter to Bansal he urges him to restore previous allocation.
In his letter CM Patnaik said that, “It is learnt that Indian RailwaysI have recently reduced an additional amount of Rs.60 crore from the budgetary allocation of East Coast Railways including Rs. l 5 crore each from the major on-going projects of Khurda Road to Bolangir and Talcher to Bimalagarh lines and Rs.30 crore from the Talcher Sarnbalpur doubling line.”
He further added that, “In June, 2012, an amount of Rs.l86 crore Was reduced from the original budgetary allocation of Rs.723 crore provided in the Original Budget announced on 14.3.2012 and this was again reduced by Rs.34 crore in September, 2012. This is against our projected total demand of Rs.2345 crore for different projects in Odisha for 2012-13. When the State of Odisha contributes revenue of more than Rs.7500 crore annually to the Indian Railways, it is a matter of regret that Rs.28O crore has been reduced out of the paltry budgetary allocation of Rs.723 crore. Such repeated reductions in budgetary allocation and that too thrice in a year will greatly hamper the process of improving the rail connectivity in Odisha and lead to abnormal delay in the completion of railway projects.”
Patnaik said that, “I strongly protest against this unilateral reduction in the budget for the State of Odisha for the third time during this year itself.- I request you to take immediate steps for restoration of the original budgetary allocation made for Odisha for the year 2012-13.”