Bhubneshwar (Orissa) , Feb.25: Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has asked the BJD and the Congress to apologise for failing to usher in development, rather than criticising Prime Minister Modi's remark on the state.
"Some political parties are misleading over Prime Minister's remark made yesterday and the media has raised questions. It was natural for the ruling party to react as the Prime Minister had pointed out that Odisha was known for many years for poverty, illiteracy and unemployment, and now, its people have started fighting for their rights," said Pradhan.
"BJD should realise that it has failed to improve the condition of the people during its 17 years of rule and that the Rajan Committee Report of 2013, when the BJP was not in power at the Centre, had placed Odisha as the least developed and most backward state, added Pradhan.
The panchayat election outcome is "the beginning of a bigger change", Pradhan said, adding that the people have voted for BJP in a big way as they are fed up with the "inert, inefficient and corrupt" BJD government in the state.
Panchayat elections will be held to 853 seats in the zilla parishads, 6665 seats in the panchayat samitis, 6801 sarpanches and 92,029 wards. Fifty per cent of the seats are reserved for women.