New Delhi, Jun 24: Biju Janata Dal Member Pinaki Misra demanded that the Centre provide special assistance to Odisha which was buffeted by four major cyclones in past six years.
''Historic injustice has been done to states in East India. During Fani cyclone, 13 lakh people were evacuated in 48 hours but crores of property -- government as well as private -- was destroyed,'' Mr Misra said during the debate on Motion of Thanks on President's address to the Joint Sitting of Parliament.
He thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for providing immediate help of Rs 1,000 crore, but, stated that a lot of work was still to be done definitely. As many as 2.5 lakh electricity poles were damaged in the cyclone, he informed.
In the context that the Prime Minister has given a new slogan – Nara - to emphasise that the synergy between National Ambitions and Regional Aspirations is vital to India’s forward march, Mr Misra said the Centre and the states must work in harmony with each other.
He stressed that the Centre should focus on macro issues including roads and railways and maintained that if money handed out to his state Odisha is increased, the revenue generated through railways by the state will increase manifolds.
Mr Misra said the youngest member of 17th Lok Sabha Chandrani Murmu was from his state and of the 21 MPs elected from Odisha, one third were women.
He stressed that Women Reservation Bill be brought in Parliament at the earliest as all parties were in favour of the legislation.
Mr Misra also called for increasing the age of High Court judges from 62 to 65 years, at par with the Supreme Court judges.
Constructive cooperation with the Centre and states was required for the welfare of the people, Mr Misra said, adding that ''Cooperative federalism, as pointed by the Prime Minister, was required. There was no option for states''.
BSP's Danish Ali, a first-timer lawmaker, said an election trust should be constituted.
He said his party has been opposing EVMs and called for discussion on its usage in elections.
Vinayak Raut of Shiv Sena called for early construction of Ram temple at Ayodhya. He also congratulated the government for introducing Triple Talaq bill in Parliament.
Rajiv Ranjan Singh of JD-U that growth of Bihar has improved immensely and if supported by the Centre, it will reach the national average.
There are no rivers in Bihar, he said, but it has to bear the hardships if the rivers are flooded in Nepal or Uttar Pradesh or other states.
He said the government should concentrate on basic issues instead of discussing controversial topics like triple talaq or Ram temple in Ayodhya.
T R Baalu of DMK, Midhun Reddy of YSRCP, Saugata Roy of Trinamool Congress, Nama Nageswara Rao of TRS and Dr Amol Ramsing Kolhe of NCP also spoke. (UNI)