Amit Shah urges people to oust BJD from Odisha
Puri, Feb 03: Bharatiya Janata Party chief Amit Shah on Sunday lashed out at Congress president Rahul Gandhi and Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik accusing them of having neglected the tribal people.
Shah projected his party as the champion of tribalsa and said that the Narendra Modi government has raised budgetary allocation for their welfare to Rs 50,000 crore from Rs 30,700 crore made during by the Congress-led UPA dispensation.
Noting that a separate ministry for tribal affairs was started by the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government, the BJP chief said the party-led government has floated the District Mineral Foundation (DMF) with huge funds for the development and welfare of tribals living in mineral-rich areas.
The funds under the DMF are being utilised by various states where mining activities are affecting the people and environment, he said.
The BJP chief also attacked Naveen Patnaik for not implementing schemes by the central government. "If you want, you can remove our names from the scheme but why are you troubling the poor people of Odisha?" he said.
He further said that the Odisha CM had not implemented the Ayushman Bharat Yojana in the state as he fears that it will increase PM Modi's popularity.
The BJP's love and respect for tribals is evident from the fact that the party has the maximum number of tribal MPs in Lok Sabha. Of the 32 tribal members in the lower house of Parliament, 28 belong to the BJP, he said.
Saying that the BJP had launched a Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme, Shah said that the Congress too had a DBT scheme.
"In our tenure, Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) ensures money is directly credited into the account of the beneficiaries. The Congress too had DBT yojana - Dealer Broker Transfer - where the money was credited into the accounts of the middlemen," Shah said.
Shah's visit to this seaside pilgrim town is seen as an exercise to woo tribals, who constitute around one fourth of Odisha's population, ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha and state Assembly elections.
This was the BJP chief's second visit in five days as he had held a rally in Salepur in Cuttack district on January 29.
OneIndia News (with PTI inputs)