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BJP Demands CBI Probe

Bhubaneswar: Alleging mining scam to the tune of around Rs 9 lakh crore in the State, senior BJP leader and Leader of Opposition Jayanarayan Mishra today demanded a CBI probe into alleged irregularities in the mining sector between 2000 and 2014.

Addressing media persons here, Shri Mishra alleged that the total value of mining irregularities in the State is estimated at Rs 8,97,443 crore.

He alleged that 192 mines in the State are operating illegally, of which 176 mines lack forest and 94 others do not have any environmental clearances.

There has been excess mining from 75 iron-ore and manganese mines while 95 mines have adversely affected rivers and nullas apart from having an impact on the lives of tribals and wildlife, the BJP MLA further alleged.

Shri Mishra informed that he has written to the President, Prime Minister, Odisha Governor, and Chief Minister highlighting the irregularities.

“I have also spoken to the PM in this regard. The PM expressed surprise over such irregularities,” the leader of the opposition told reporters.

“It is suspected that corruption in mining took place with the knowledge and under the supervision of the Chief Minister,” he further alleged.

The BJP leader also demanded that the recommendations made by the Shah Commission should also be implemented to avoid irregularities in Odisha’s mining sector.

Shri Mishra said it would be appropriate to order a CBI probe into the alleged scam.

However, senior BJD leader Badrinarayan Patra rejected the gross allegation and said the opposition made a habit of making such statements to mislead people and gain mileage ahead of the upcoming election.