The battle between the Congress led UPA government at the centre and the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) of Orissa over the controversial Polavaram project and the cancellation of forest clearance to Vedanta Aluminium, is hotting up with the BJD putting the centre on the mat.
Accusing the centre of stalling big ticket investment projects in Orissa like Vedanta, the youth wing of the BJD held a rally today at Lanjigarh to demonstrate its opposition to what it called the 'anti-industrialisation drive' of the centre against the state.
Another rally has been planned at Malkangiri soon to showcase its stiff opposition to the Polarvaram project according to Pyari Mohan Mohapatra, senior BJD leader and one of the closest aides to the state chief minister Naveen Patnaik.
According to the BJD game plan it would woo locals in the tribal belt to counter the political mileage said to be gained by Rahul Gandh, general secretary of the All India Congress Committee (AICC) during his address to a congregation of tribals at Lanjigarh on August 26.
The ruling BJD is sore with the centre for having rejected the Stage II forest clearance for bauxite mining by Vedanta Aluminium at Niyagiri hils and according national status to the Polavaram project.
Meanwhile, the Opposition Congress in the state opposed the BJD's planned rally at Lanjigarh calling it 'politically motivated.'
Also, the Congress today sought the closure of Vedanta refinery at ecologically sensitive Lanjigarh following the centre's show cause notice and denial of mining at Niyamgiri.