Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday is scheduled to meet Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan for discussions on matters pertaining to the withdrawal of subsidized tax on IOCL’s Paradip Refinery at Odisha Bhawan in New Delhi. However, political gossips in Odisha are on high ahead of this meeting.
State Agriculture Minister Damodar Rout, however, criticized this meeting and said though Dharmendra Pradhan is a Minister of State and CM is superior to him as per the protocol, Naveen could have called him here to discuss over the issue instead of meeting him in Delhi. He also said, “State Government had already signed an MoU with IOCL regarding the subsidized tax issue and hence should meet the officials of IOCL on the breaching of MoU, rather than meeting the Minister”.
Even though the officials of IOCL and Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry had more than couple of meetings with the Chief Secretary of Odisha along with other officials regarding the same issue, nothing was finalized.
Speculations fuel up over BJD-NDA alliance ahead of the meet as recently the saffron party has successfully got a hold of Bihar in alliance with the JDU and AIADMK in Tamil Nadu.
Who is meeting whom at Odisha Bhawan? Whether it’s Dharmendra Pradhan who has arranged the meeting upon CM’s request or it’s the CM who is meeting Pradhan on later’s request, is yet to be known.