24th EZC meet: Naveen seeks Special Focus State to Odisha


Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday demanded the Centre to declare Odisha, which is facing natural disasters frequently, as a Special Focus State.

“Taking the frequency of natural disasters faced by Odisha into consideration, “Vulnerability to Natural Calamity” should be taken as a criteria to declare Odisha as a Special Focus State,” said the Chief Minister at the 24th Eastern Zonal Council (EZC) meeting chaired by Union Home Minister Amit Shah here.

He also demanded a Special Economic package for expeditious implementation of Infrastructural Development of Odisha.

“If a nationwide analysis is done for teledensity, banking density, rail, and road density, East Zone would be at the bottom in all these subjects that are in Union List. There is a need to double the allotments made to this region so that they catch up to the national benchmarks,” said Patnaik.

The Chief Minister also demanded the revision of coal royalty, the release of grants to Urban Local Bodies, the release of subsidy of paddy procurement, speed up of railway projects.