War of words between BJD and BJP over airport terminal link building collapse- The New Indian Express www.newindianexpress.com


By Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR: A war of words has started between political parties hours after the collapse of the terminal link building at the Biju Patnaik International Airport (BPIA) late last night with the ruling BJD stating that the party does not believe in politicizing human tragedies and accidents like the BJP.

However, the BJP has hit back by alleging that the ruling BJD has made such a statement only to shield the construction firm whose chief Dilip Khatei allegedly has links with several influential ruling party leaders and senior officials.

Terming the incident as unfortunate, BJD spokesperson Sasmit Patra said that the incident could have been avoided. “We demand a thorough investigation and strict and exemplary action against those responsible for the incident,” he said and added, “Unlike the BJP which has the habit of politicising human tragedies and accidents, we (the BJD) do not believe in politicising such incidents.”

“Our condolences are with the family of the deceased. Adequate compensation should be provided to them and the injured should be given treatment free of cost,” he said.

The BJP has, however, taken strong exception to BJD’s attempt to ‘unnecessarily drag in’ the party’s name in the incident. “If the BJD is not doing politics, what was the necessity of taking BJP’s name in the incident. An unfortunate incident has taken place, a probe has been ordered and action will be taken as per its findings,” BJP spokesperson Golak Mohapatra told this paper. He termed the incident as extremely unfortunate and demanded Odisha government to order a probe into the mishap.

“Who had politicised the Bomikhal flyover collapse. The then works secretary was given ticket by ruling BJD to contest polls while BJP is always concerned for the safety of people,” he said.

Mohapatra also demanded that the state government should make public the names of the ruling BJD politicians and senior officers who have links with the chief of the construction firm. “Patra made such a statement only to shield the construction firm chief,” he said.

Congress, on the other hand, demanded a CBI probe into the mishap. Senior MLA Suresh Kumar Routray alleged that the Centre should be blamed for the building collapse. “Such a mishap occurred due to callousness on part of the construction agency, and the contractor should be arrested. The Centre is responsible for the incident. A compensation of Rs 20 lakh and a job should be provided to one member of the family of the deceased. Had the incident occurred during day time, the number of casualties would have multiplied,” he said.

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