CM launches smart health cards in Bhawanipatna amid protests over teacher’s murder

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Monday launched the distribution of Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana (BSKY) smart health cards in Kalahandi even as there were protests from Opposition parties in several parts of the state and district demanding the removal of minister of state for home Dibya Shankar Mishra over the Mamita Meher murder case.

The function attended by the Chief Minister in which the minister of state for home shared the dais with him concluded smoothly. However, protests were seen at several other places in the state. While BJP workers brought out a massive rally in the capital demanding immediate dismissal of Mishra from the ministry, BJD and BJP workers clashed outside the office of the Revenue Divisional Commissioner (RDC) at Sambalpur.

Agriculture minister Arun Sahu and minister of state for skill development and technical education Premanand Nayak faced protests from Opposition workers at Kesinga and Karlamunda while distributing smart health cards.

In the midst of tension and opposition accusations, the Chief Minister arrived at OUAT college ground here at 11am and distributed health cards to the beneficiaries. He also digitally inaugurated 201 different projects valued at Rs Rs 179 crore and laid foundation stones for 48 developmental projects valued at Rs 680 crore of Kalahandi district and addressed the gathering.

In his recorded message which was played at the meeting, the Chief Minister said that works are on in Kalahandi for infrastructure development. Stating that projects worth Rs 2500 crore have been started to provide drinking water to all villages, he said that in the agriculture sector 68 percent of the land in the district has been irrigated.

The Chief Minister said in the field of fisheries, the district has received a national award and it is the highest cotton-producing district and during the current year, cotton farmers are getting a good price. He said Kalahandi has now turned into an education hub with agriculture, engineering colleges and polytechnics. Work on the medical college is in progress and it will operate soon, he said.

Addressing the meeting, the minister of state for home was silent on the woman teacher’s murder and concentrated on the work done by the BJD government for the development of the district.

To ensure that the visit of the CM was peaceful and avert untoward incidents in view of the protest by opposition parties, there was tight police deployment in different strategic locations in Bhawanipatna town with the deployment of 25 platoons of police. Several opposition party workers have been detained as a preventive measure.

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