ONI Bureau: A few days after Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal Governments withdrew consent to CBI and its Officers to exercise jurisdiction in the state, similar demands are being made in Odisha following the media reports of CBI entering the State Secretariat on October 29 and seeking information from a Minister.
Odisha’s leading Daily Newspaper ‘The Samaja’ has reported on its front page today that a CBI team led by SP K. Narayan Rana entered the Secretariat at 4 PM on October 29 and held discussions with a Minister seeking information from him in a case related to Seashore Group.
The case was related to an agreement for a boating project undertaken by Seashore Group for Mahanadi River in Cuttack in 2009-10. The CBI team wanted to know why the original contract was scrapped, new tenders were floated, and then again the project was abandoned.
The Minister was reportedly asked whether he would like to be a ‘Government Witness’, which he declined and said all decisions would be taken at the government level only. Since the CBI is investigating the Seashore chit fund scam, it’s looking into all aspects of the case.
However, political analysts believe it could be a tactic to put pressure on BJD so that it extends support to Modi Government at the Centre and join the NDA before or after the 2019 polls. It would be interesting to see how CM Naveen Patnaik responds to the situation. Can he take the risk of blocking the CBI like Naidu and Mamata and antagonize the Centre?