Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik rates PM Narendra Modi eight on a scale of 10

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 Chief Minister of Odisha Naveen Patnaik. File

Chief Minister of Odisha Naveen Patnaik. File
| Photo Credit: BISWARANJAN ROUT

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Sunday said he would rate Prime Minister Narendra Modi eight out 10 on various parameters in leading a government at the Centre.

“I would give PM eight out of 10 marks because of what he has done for foreign policy, and in various other matters too. Also, there has been less corruption in this government. He has helped in rooting out corruption and is trying his best to serve the people of our country,” Mr. Patnaik said, when asked how many marks he would give Mr. Modi on a scale of 10 at the Odisha Literary Festival organised by an English news daily here.

“We have cordial relationship with the Centre. Naturally, we want the development for our State. It is important to have the Centre’s partnership in development,” Mr. Patnaik said. He also supported the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government’s vision for ‘One Nation One Election’.

“When I took office at the beginning of the century, we all know the poverty Odisha faced. First, I tried my best to eradicate corruption. Then, we were hit by a super cyclone. We took strong steps for disaster management quite successfully. We have excelled in agriculture, education, education, industry, and the health sector,” Mr. Patnaik said, when asked about his undiminished popularity in the State.

The Odisha CM said he supported the women’s reservation Bill. “My father [the late Biju Patnaik] initiated 33% reservation for women in local bodies. We have increased the same to 50%. Since the last election, we have reserved 33% seats for women for Parliamentary seats at the party-level. We also have the Mission Shakti programme in which seven million women are involved. They have been empowered economically and socially,” he said.

Mr. Patnaik also said his party was ready to face the Assembly and Lok Sabha elections “at any time”.

Though keeping equidistance from both the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress remains the the BJD’s policy, the regional party has supported the NDA on more than one occasion during critical junctures, including the passage of Bills in the Rajya Sabha, where the ruling alliance was short of majority at a point in time.

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