No 'ministers versus officers' in CM Grievance Cell: Naveen Patnaik
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Monday rubbished the Opposition's claim of elected leaders being sidelined in the CM Grievance Cell programme, insisting that the Cell is handled by the CMO and there was no question of "ministers vs officials" in the conduct of the programme.
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Monday rubbished the Opposition's claim of elected leaders being sidelined in the CM Grievance Cell programme, insisting that the Cell is handled by the CMO and there was no question of "ministers vs officials" in the conduct of the programme. "CM Grievance Cell is always handled by CMO and no minister attends it in Bhubaneswar as well. Where is the issue of ministers versus officers in this?" the chief minister said during the ongoing Monsoon Session of the Assembly on Monday.
The CM informed that the "mammoth exercise" was carried out in more than 190 locations over a period of six months, covering three to five venues every day. "CM Grievance Cell is handled by the CMO and as per my directions, officers from the CMO conducted decentralised grievances cell in all the districts of the state. This mammoth exercise was carried out in more than 190 locations over a period of six months. Every day, three to five venues were covered and, in the process, more than 57,000 petitions were collected. As of date, more than 43,000 petitions have been resolved or disposed of," he added.
Amid allegations of choppers used by officials in the Chief Minister's Office, Patnaik said on Monday that the CM Grievance Cell was taken to the doorsteps of the people in the shortest period possible and it would have taken one and half years to conduct the same exercise by road. "As regards chopper use, it would have taken one and half years to do the same exercise by road vis a vis by chopper," Patnaik said.
Underlining the cost-effectiveness of taking the scheme by choppers to the people's doorsteps, the chief minister said, "If all these more than 57000 petitioners (most are community petitions) had to come to Bhubaneswar to attend CM Grievance Cell, how much money would they have had to spend in travel and stay and how much wage loss they would have had?" Further, on chopper use, Patnaik said, "In the last three and half years, the average expenditure of chopper use per month has been less than Rupees 1.5 crores per month, including over the last six months. It's completely false and misleading to say that excess expenditure has been made in the last six months."
The CM shared that two years of the pandemic led to the disruption of grievance redressal because of which the CM Grievance Cell was taken to the doorsteps of the people. "Two years of Covid disruption caused dislocation in grievance redressal. Therefore, CM Grievance Cell was taken to the doorsteps of the people in the shortest period possible," he said.
Lauding the Grievance Cell as the biggest and most effective of its kind in the country, CM Patnaik said, "Petitioners are given written replies and phone calls are made on feedback through Mo Sarkar. This is one of the biggest and most effective peoples' grievance redressal exercises carried out by any government in the country." The chief minister added that the same officers were used for Covid management as well.
"During Covid, the same team along with senior officers were sent to monitor Covid management when others were inside their homes," he said. Taking on the Opposition, the CM said, "Opposition members should be happy that so many grievances in their areas have also been resolved. I do not understand how someone can oppose the solving of people's grievances. Such Opposition is anti-people and people will give them a befitting reply for such attitude."
"We are in public service and peoples' grievances are our topmost priority. People are happy, people's representatives are happy. Opposition members should not be unhappy because of political reasons," he added. Highlighting that people's issues were the 'top priority' for his government, Patnaik said, "For my government, people come first and resolving people's issues is a top priority and I will continue to do so in the best possible manner." (ANI)
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