Bhubaneswar, Oct. 12: Odisha's GDP rate is higher than four BJP-ruled states - Rajasthan, Gujarat, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand - and its growth rate in the past decade has been higher than these states, agriculture minister Damodar Rout said today.
This is for the first time a senior BJD leader has made such a scathing attack on the BJP and the Prime Minister.
The minister was rebutting the BJP's charge that there had been no progress during Naveen Patnaik's 17-year rule in the state.
Rout also raised the issue of central negligence. He said: "The state is giving 33 per cent revenue to the railways and gives nearly 25 per cent towards mineral royalty. But what they are giving to the state in return?"
Rout sought to know from Prime Minister Narendra Modi the extent of success he had achieved in bringing back black money stashed away overseas. He also questioned Modi's silence on the phenomenal rise in the business of BJP president Amit Shah's son, Jay.
Reacting to this, BJP spokesperson Sajjan Sharma said: "Being the agriculture minister, Rout should talk about his department and not on other issues. The BJD did not come to power by referring to statistics of states. Why they are raising these issues now?"