Congress plans privilege motion on Naveen Patnaik's 'servant' issue

Naveen Patnaik

Opposition Congress today said it was planning to move a privilege motion in Odisha Assembly on reported statement of a Cabinet minister declaring himself as a "servant" of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.

"The minister's statement has lowered the dignity of a member of the legislative assembly. If a minister says he is servant of the Chief Minister, what is the public image of MLAs," Leader of Opposition Bhupinder Singh told reporters.

Stating that everybody in the state have witnessed in television how a senior cabinet minister at a public rally in Ganjam district declared himself as a servant of the Patnaik, Singh said: "Media has been writing and showing satirical reports on the minister's statement".

Singh said the minister or any MLA could be a servant of the people, but not of an individual.

"Neither the state government nor the minister concerned has so far disowned the controversial statement. It must be clarified," the Congress leader said alleging that the minister had also degraded the dignity of the people of his constituency in Ganjam district.

Meanwhile, agriculture minister Debi Prasad Mishra demanded an apology from the leader of opposition for his statement on the matter.

"The leader of opposition should behave in a decent manner. It is not acceptable on part of Singh to give such a statement. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is our leader. He has never wanted any one to become his servant," Mishra told reporters outside the House.

Though the issue was also raised in the assembly during a discussion on farmers issue, speaker Pradip Kumar Amat in his ruling directed expunction of certain remarks made by Singh.

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