Ex-Chief Secretary Bijay Patnaik Slams Odisha Govt After Joining Congress; Alleges Misrule

Bhubaneswar: Once considered a powerful bureaucrat and a close aide of Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, former Chief Secretary Bijay Patnaik lashed out at the BJD government after joining Congress, alleging poor governance and rampant corruption during its rule.

Apart from misrule and large scale corruption, Odisha has been witnessing an alarming spurt in violence during BJD government, alleged the retired IAS officer, who joined Congress at the AICC headquarters in New Delhi on Friday.

The 1976-batch IAS officer, who served as Naveen’s Principal Secretary for six years from 2004 to 2010 and state’s Chief Secretary between 2010 and 2013, said his decision to join Congress was aimed to work for a change in the situation.

Terming the existing situation in the state as pathetic, Patnaik reportedly claimed that the common people feel helpless and they do not know whom to approach when they face any problem as the administration does not seem to be with them.

Even people’s representatives including Ministers, MPs and MLAs are not in a position to help the public and efforts should be made to bring about a change and ‘re-establish’ democracy, he said.

In a scathing attack on the BJD, Patnaik alleged that the ruling party is now only bothered about getting votes and winning elections instead of serving people.

Claiming that the administration has failed to reach out to the common people, he said the situation needs to change. The ex-bureaucrat said he will try to play a role in changing the situation and make it people-oriented.

Stating that he liked Congress for its liberal approach and commitment to the poor, Patnaik said like many others, he was also impressed with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s recent Bharat Jodo Yatra which sought to focus on the importance of peaceful coexistence.

On contesting elections, Patnaik said it is entirely up to the Congress leadership which will take a decision on the matter.

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