Saturday, May 27, 2006


What did minister Chandrasekhar Sahu say and how reliable are his statements?


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The Pragativadi report is as follows. But can we trust what Mr. Sahu says.
Is there any truth behind it or is it fiction to appease incensed Oriyas who are still fuming at the way UPA government has acted so far on the NIS/IISER issue? See the Telegraph article at the end to get an idea on why we do not take Mr. Sahu's words at face value.
As the saying goes, ``once bitten twice shy.''

So, if a positive decision on an IISER in Bhubaneswar has been made, we will wait until the PM says it. Based on the past history, we are not going to take Minister Sahu's words as reported.

Orissa to have an IIS soon: Sahu


Union minister of state for labour and employment
Chandrasekhar Sahu on Thursday announced that an Indian Institute of Science (IIS) would be
set up in Orissa in place of National Institute of Science (NIS).
Briefing newsmen at the Congress Bhawan here on the occasion of completion
of two-year of the UPA government at the Centre, he said that prime minister
Manmohan Singh would shortly make an announcement to this effect much to the
delight of the people of Orissa.

Sahu also said that the prime minister would also lay a foundation stone for
the proposed petroleum complex at Paradip soon.

The project envisages a massive investment of Rs 47,000 crore, he added.
Justifying the cancellation of the proposed NIS in the state, Sahu said that
the then NDA government had made mere announcements without backing it up
with firm proposals.

The NIS was proposed by the UGC and since it was not the competent
authority, the idea was rejected, he pointed out.

He also said that the regional centre of AIIMS, for which the then prime
minister Atal Bihar Vajpayee had laid a foundation stone amidst much
fanfare, was virtually non-existent in terms of Cabinet approval and
budgetary allocations.

Though a section of have been raking up sentiments over these issues by
giving impression that the UPA government had scrapped these projects, the
UPA government on the contrary, has formalised the regional centre, he
The following Telegraph article suggests that Mr. Sahu's words should not be taken at face value.


Oil project to get new stone
Bhubaneswar, May 25: Minister of state for labour Chandrasekhar Sahu today said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh would re-lay the foundation stone for Indian Oil’s (IOC) Rs 47,000-crore mega project at Paradip, but not all were willing to fall for the announcement.

A senior IOC official from Delhi expressed doubt about the quantum of investment claimed by the minister as well as the re-laying part. Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had laid the foundation stone for the refinery-cum-petrochemicals project in July 2000.

“We had earlier planned to instal a 9-million-tonne fuel refinery. Later, considering the demand for fuels and petrochemical products, the capacity was jacked up (to 15,000 million tonnes). The oil board cleared the Rs 25,000-crore project just two months ago. I don’t see the project cost doubling so soon,” said the IOC official.

He also seemed unaware of the “decision” to re-lay the foundation stone. “No one is aware of such things,” the official held.

Addressing reporters here today, Sahu said he met Singh and petroleum minister Murli Deora recently to discuss the project. “I requested the Prime Minister to re-lay the stone. He agreed to my request and would decide on a date soon,” the minister claimed.

After the stone-laying in 2000, the project ran into rough weather as the Orissa government rejected IOC’s request for tax benefits. Later in 2004, however, the state changes its mind.

Besides the refinery, the project would also feature facilities for production of front-end petrochemicals and a pipeline to Ranchi.

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