Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik shows one can be mature even while being in Opposition

Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik issued a statement after PM Modi’s visit to the state to review the situation post-Cyclone Yaas. Patnaik said that they have not sought any immediate financial assistance from the Centre and wouldn’t like to burden the Union Government at this point in time while adding that the state government would use their own resources to deal with the large scale devastation caused by the cyclone.

Patnaik also informed the PM during the latter’s visit that at present the Odisha government would use their own resources and also pointed out the steps being taken by the Patnaik government in dealing with the crisis. In contrast, one Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee not just kept both the PM and Bengal Governor waiting for close to 30 minutes at the Kalaikunda airport but also left the cyclone review meeting after handing over the relevant papers citing she had other engagements.

Additionally, she sought an aid of INR 20,000 crores from the Centre. According to Times Now journalist Megha Prasad, the breach of protocol by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is the first such incident in recent history. This clearly indicates that Banerjee is more interested in playing politics. Patnaik, on the other hand, has been dealing with crisis in a mature manner and cooperating with the Centre.

Ideologically, the Naveen Patnaik government is certainly a secular one but the Odisha government doesn’t indulge in blame games like its Bengal or Maharashtra counterparts. The Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi Maharashtra government, which is one of the worst-performing ones, had also demanded financial aid from the Centre. Shiv Sena MP had also demanded 1500 crores.

Centre-states relationship shouldn’t become a game of one upmanship particularly during a crisis when the citizenry should be the topmost priority. Whatever be the ideological leanings of Naveen Patnaik, when it comes to handling crises and cooperating with Centre during such times, the Patnaik government is far ahead of other secular counterparts such as Bengal and Maharashtra.


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