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Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik To Meet Union Steel Minister Dharmendra Pradhan

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Bhubaneswar: During his week-long New Delhi tour, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is slated to meet Union Steel & Mines and Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan to discuss matters relating to the interests of the State.

As per sources, both will meet at Delhi-based Odisha Bhawan tomorrow and both the leaders are expected to discuss roadmap to make Odisha the steel capital of the country.

Sources also revealed that projects related to petroleum sector are also likely to be discussed.

This is for the first time, the regional satrap will formally meet the Union Minister after the formation of BJP-led NDA Government at the Centre as well as BJD-led Government in the State here.

As tongues have started wagging in the political circle here over the queer tete-e-tete, BJD today justified such a meeting between the two virtually political bête noires.

Senior BJD MLA and party spokesperson Pratap Deb reacted, “The meeting is significant because Odisha is a hub in steel production among other states of India. Hence, it is obvious he (Dharmendra Pradhan) will be holding discussion as the Union Steel Minister with our Chief Minister. They will discuss how the steel production and its marketing would increase so that Odisha could gain the profit.”

“This meeting is a routine one and if both of them hold discussion, it augurs well for Odisha,” he opined.

On being prodded that BJD and BJP are now trying to get closer after elections, pat came his reply, “Odisha’s interest is our agenda. Odisha’s development is our agenda. We have already made it clear that we will certainly take help of one who helps in pacing up Odisha agenda. So far Odisha’s interest is concerned, we’ll approach thousands time. This may be liked or disliked by anyone.”

“People have given us mandate for fifth consecutive time. While approaching the people, we are keeping forth our demands before the Central Government. If required, we’ll keep on pursuing the demands of Odisha thousands time,” the BJD spokesperson countered. 

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Pratap Keshari Deb, Spokesperson, BJD