Archive for the 'Demanding equitable treatment' Category

Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik vents against UPA and NDA; Beginning of a sustainable third front?

CENTER & ODISHA, Chief Minister's actions, Defence establishments, Demanding equitable treatment, Mine royalty and cess, Railway network in Odisha 6 Comments »

This is interesting. Naveen Patnaik has a strong election winning record in Odisha and based on the current ZP and Panchayat elections, it seems he will also win big in the next elections in Odisha. He is suave, gentle, has a good natinoal image, not prone to histironics (like Mamata Banerjee), not an ayaaram-gayaram (i.e., does not change alliances often like AIADMK and hence reliable), speaks good English, and Odisha being a smaller state other state leaders will not think he is too powerful. So he may be an acceptable PM candidate for a third front consisting mainly of various regional parties. He is right about the problems with the two national alliances in India. The big problem with UPA is its multiple power centers, especially with the all power no responsibility position of the Yuvraj. He and his cronies have single handedly stopped major development in Odisha; especially the Vedanta University. The other problem with national parties is that their leadership in Delhi control the states where they rule. As a result, while those states do get some extra benefits, they are manipulated by the center to agree to their wishes, even if it may be detrimental to the state’s interest. In the context of Odisha a UPA govt in Delhi can push a Congress govt. in Odisha to give mining leases to companies of its choice.

At present the Odisha government is able to defy them to some extent. Even in case of coal blocks where the center unilaterally allocates the blocks, the state is able to put its terms, sometimes vocally, as the companies need the help of the state in getting the land and various clearances. That is the reason MCL and NTPC have agreed to establish medical colleges in Odisha. If there was a Congress government they would not be as vocal and may have just signed on the dotted lines as dictated by the central leadership. Of course one has to also think of the country as a whole. But in the past what has happened is that in the name of "national interest" Odisha has suffered greatly, some of it partly overcome by the non-Congress leadership in Odisha.

Examples of this are:

  • The freight equalization policy that harmed the industrialization of Odisha.
  • The low royalty rates of minerals.
  • Lack of port development. (There is folklore about how Biju Patnaik unilaterally went ahead to establish Paradeep port)
    • Also related is the disregard of the military about accommodating port development near their sites.
  • The opposition of Rahul Gandhi and his cohorts to industrial development in Kalahandi and Vedanta University.
  • Lack of development of Railways in Odisha.

Some of the above were overcome when there was a third front type government at the center. The ECOR zone was one of them. Since the ECOR zone was established things have looked up in the Railways sector in Odisha, but there is lot more to be done.

In the mining and metal based industry sector, since the BJD government in Odisha has become very discriminative in giving leases and installed the value added policy there has been a beeline of investment (some of it yet to come to fruition). The government has seen through the past games of Tatas and now have forced them establish a plant in Odisha (hence their upcoming Kalinganagar plant) and yet have not given them any new leases. SAIL and NALCO are not having an easier time either. 

So the point is that in our current set up where leadership in Delhi (true for both UPA and NDA) often dictates the state leaders of the same party to do what it wants, the state may lose out in the name of national interest. On the other hand *honest* regional parties can guard the state’s interests as has happened in Odisha. More and more states are going that way.

However, its not clear what kind of central government a coalition of regional parties will be able to form and how well will that work at the national level.

More ramblings later. … (See for related thoughts.)


Eastern zonal Cultural center has all its infrastructure in West Bengal

Central govt. schemes, Demanding equitable treatment, Jatra, Odia music, Odisha artists, Odisha Culture, Odisha dances, Odisha govt. Inaction, Palla and Daskathia, Puppetry 1 Comment »

Following is from the PIB which brought our attention to the zonal cultural centers funded by the Ministry of Culture, Government in India. By looking at the web page of the Eastern Zonal Cultural Center in Kolkata, it seems like all of the infrastructure of this center is in West Bengal.

The aims and objectives of the Zonal Cultural Centres (ZCCs) are to preserve, promote and disseminate the arts, specially folk/tribal arts of the country. The ZCCs endeavour to develop and promote the rich diversity and uniqueness of various arts of the Zone and to upgrade and enrich consciousness of the people about their cultural heritage.  

There are only seven ZCCs in the country. Though no ZCC has its headquarters in Karnataka, the state of Karnataka is a member of the South Zone Cultural Centre (SZCC), having its headquarters at Thanjavur and also of South Central Zone Cultural Centre (SCZCC) having its headquarters at Nagpur. 

The details of ZCCs, location-wise and the schemes/programmes organised/executed by each centre, ZCC-wise are annexed.


Government has set up seven Zonal Cultural Centres (ZCCs) having headquarters in various part of the country as per the details given below:-


Sl. No.

Name of the centre


Member States


North Zone Cultural Centre


Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan and Union Territory of Chandigarh


West Zone Cultural Centre


Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Goa, Union Territories of Daman & Diu and Dadra & Nagar Haveli


South Zone Cultural Centre


Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Union Territories of Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep, Puducherry.


South Central Zone Cultural Centre


Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra


Eastern Zonal Cultural Centre


Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, Manipur, Orissa, Sikkim, Tripura, West Bengal and Union Territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands.


North Central Zone Cultural Centre


Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Haryana, Rajasthan,  Uttarakhand and NCT of Delhi.


North East Zone Cultural Centre


Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura.



  The ZCCs have been carrying out various activities in accordance with their aims and objectives:-  

                   I.            National Cultural Exchange Programme: With a view to present art forms of one region to another and expose the diverse cultural heritage of each region to the rest of the country, the folk/tribal artistes are sent on exchange manner to participate in the programmes organized by the seven Zonal Cultural Centres.

                II.            Guru Shishya Parampara Scheme:  The Scheme was introduced in 2003-04 with a view to promote development of new talents in the field of music and dance, folk and tribal art forms, under the able guidance of Gurus. 

             III.            Young Talented Artistes Scheme:  The Scheme was introduced during the year 2004-05 to recognize and encourage young talents in the various Folk/Tribal arts forms in different regions in the country.

            IV.            Documentation of Vanishing Art Forms:  Under the Scheme, documentation of various folk and tribal art forms is undertaken, especially of those which are seen to be vanishing.

               V.            Shilpagram Activities:  ZCCs have set up Shilpagrams at Chandigarh, Khajuraho, Udaipur, Guwahati, Allahabad and Shantiniketan to encourage various forms of folk/tribal arts and crafts from rural India. These Shilpagrams are attracting a large number of domestic as well as foreign visitors. Through these Shilpgrams, a number of artistes and artisans are benefited and a large number of people are made aware of our rich cultural heritage.

            VI.            Loktarang – National Folk Dance Festival and OCTAVE – Festival of the North East: All the ZCCs participate in these National level festivals organized every year in New Delhi and/or other places. A large number of folk/tribal artistes from all corners of the country performs during these festivals to showcase the diverse folk/tribal arts of our country.



Following is from the "About Us" page of the Eastern Zonal Cultural Center.


The idea for Zonal Cultural Centers germinated in the mind of our late Prime Minister, Rajiv Gandhi. At his instance, several centers were set up. They represent the effort on the part of the Government and the people to preserve and protect our rich cultural heritage and to bring it closer to the lives of the people. With each State or Union Territory belonging to at least one Zonal Center, the objective is to foster amongst the people within each zone and among zones, much greater cultural exchanges and understanding. This not only results in a better understanding of our heritage but also brings out the underlying unity of our diverse cultural traditions.

A self-transforming civilization that defies any attempt to freeze it in space and time, living India is a mosaic of varied cultures, layer upon layer, tempered in a history of a common vitality.

Since independence, it has been the concern of the Government of India to encourage the evolution and consolidation of Indian culture by bringing its different streams closer and by making people of various regions know and understand each other’s distinctive traits in a spirit of appreciation and acceptance of the unity in diversity within this country.

The establishment of the Zonal Cultural Centers, in collaboration with the State Governments and Union Territories, is one of the measures taken by the Government of India to achieve this objective.

The Eastern Zonal Cultural Center (EZCC) covering the states of Assam, Bihar, Jharkhand, Manipur, Orissa, Sikkim, Tripura, West Bengal and The Union Territory of The Andaman and Nicobar Islands is one of the seven such Zonal Cultural Centers set up by the Government of India with a view to culturally integrate the states and Union Territories as a part of the program of national integration.

Since its inception in 1985 the EZCC has been functioning as a cultural nerve center, between and among the numerous ethnic cultural centers/groups of excellence of the eastern parts of the country. The Center strives through its various activities to enrich, promote and strengthen these traditions. The Center is totally dedicated to the promotion, projection and dissemination of our traditional culture.

Over the past several years, the EZCC has been able to infuse among people a conscious appreciation of the rich cultural heritage of its own zone as well as other parts of the country through its manifold programs of folk, tribal and classical dance music and dance, documentation and publication, workshops, as well as its exhibitions on arts and crafts.

The numerous fairs and festivals, seminars and symposia organized through out the year are efforts to combat the constant onslaught of the electronic media.

The Center is under the overall supervision of the Department of Culture, Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Government of India and is headed by the Director. His Excellency the Governor of West Bengal is the chairman of the EZCC.

The more we try to unravel the mysteries of our own many splendoured culture, the more we perceive the underlying strength of unity and harmony that rises above all differences and distinctions and enmeshes us in its inherent bonds. This is what we are committed to project and promote.

The following is from the Infrastructure page of the Eastern Zonal Cultural Center.

A. The Bharatiyam Cultural Multiplex is situated at IB-201, Sector III, Salt Lake City, Kolkata 700106.

The facilities available at the Bharatiyam Cultural Multiplex include


  • Purbashree (Main Auditorium)
    Air conditioned auditorium measuring 7850 square feet, having a capacity for over 900 persons.

  • Rangmanch (Open Air Theatre)
    Open Air Theatre measuring 4000 square feet has been built with a seating capacity of about 400 people.

  • Naat Ghar (Studio Theatre)
    Air conditioned studio theatre measuring 1200 square feet has a seating capacity for 100 persons.
  • Sobha Ghar (Art Gallery)
    The air-conditioned art gallery measures 3280 square feet. The exhibition wall is provided with track lighting.
  • Karmashala-I and II (Workshop Rooms)
    The air-conditioned workshop rooms measuring 610 square feet each are used by the EZCC to hold a variety of workshops on instrumental/ vocal music, performing arts, doll making, painting etc.
  • Kala Mandap
    The open air space measuring 4270square feet is ideal for holding crafts fairs and other festivals. Beautiful sculptures made by eminent artists give the place a perfect ambience.
  • Food Court
    The open air Food Court measuring 2000 square feet with its ethnic background is an ideal place for hosting food festivals etc.


B. The Aikatan Cultural Center is situated at IA-190, Sector III, Salt Lake City, Kolkata 700097.

The facilities available at the Aikatan Cultural Complex include

  • Air conditioned auditorium which has a seating capacity for 110 persons. It is ideal for seminars, workshops, lecture demonstrations and cultural programs.
  • Dormitory facilities for men/women in two halls with 32 beds in each
  • Dining hall


C. SRIJANI, the Shilpagram Complex of the EZCC is situated in Santiniketan, Bolpur in Birbhum District of West Bengal.


This unique cultural center provides a conducive and infrastructure to nurture our traditional arts and crafts.

The complex comprises of huts, representative of EZCC’s member states. The huts incorporate traditional architectural features and design.



The question is if the Eastern Zonal Cultural Center is supposed to cater several states in the Eastern part of India, including Odisha, why is all of its infrastructure in West Bengal.

This means the system of zonal cultural center is not working. The GOI must exapnd it to all major states and establish a similar center in Odisha. Odisha CM must lobby for it and make sure it is included in the next five year plan starting from 2012.


Manmohan Singh has been generous to Patnaik’s demands of late?

CENTER & ODISHA, Demanding equitable treatment, Elections 2009, Key Center-State issues, Odisha govt. action, Odisha MPs 2 Comments »

Following are excerpts from an article in Telegraph.

Congress managers have launched an operation to manage the numbers in the Lok Sabha after the political flux caused by the women’s reservation bill.

The government is working on two tiers to build a cushion in case the BJP tries to push the UPA to the wall with the support of the Samajwadi Party, the BSP, the RJD and the Left. …

… The Congress is also in touch with the Biju Janata Dal for a “limited understanding” in parliamentary proceedings even as the two parties oppose each other in Orissa. There is a unity of purpose — fighting Maoists and clearing development projects — and Manmohan Singh has been generous to Patnaik’s demands of late.

As the current term of the government progresses the UPA will be needing BJD’s help. The Orissa CM and BJD MPs must be ready to forcefully ask the fulfillment of some of Odisha’s important or longstanding demands. But no demand for a "special category state" please.

Odisha received 2% of the central funding since 2004: Is Bihar Times right?

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Following is an excerpt from an article in Bihar Times.

… fund flow from the center to states takes place in one of the following four ways:

  1. Proportionate Tax Devolution as specified by Finance Commission
  2. Grant in aid  again following the Finance Commission formula
  3. Central Investments (at sole discretion of federal government)
  4. Loans (at discretion of federal & state government)

It is obvious from the above mechanism that federal government enjoys absolute discretion only in the matter of central investments. Central benevolence towards specific states can be decided only on the basis of the investments it is making there.

For a judicious assessment of UPA led central government it would be pertinent to consider a period starting from 1st April 2004 till date. A cursory look at the figures for the period under consideration, as exhibited in the following chart, has an interesting story to tell. Four states, viz. Maharashtra, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat, together make up for 50% of the central investments. In rupees terms, their share corresponds to one lac five thousand fifty five crores (INR 10,55,52,13,00,000) of the total central investments of two lac nine thousand and fifty crores (INR 20,90,47,34,00,000).  Further, a major chunk of this has been allocated to just two states that is Maharashtra at 16% and West Bengal at 15%. In contrast, Bihar got only 3.87% of the central investments. Madhya Pradesh (3%), Rajasthan (3%) and Orissa (2%) lagged further behind.

I am not sure how the above was calculated. But if the numbers are right then this should be brought to the notice of the Odisha government and leaders.  (Thanks to Kanhu Roul for the pointer.)

Till September 2009, 32.6 per cent of investment proposals worth Rs 3.06 lakh crore have already been implemented in Odisha; this is better than other states: ASSOCHAM

Central public sector, Demanding equitable treatment, Investment ranking, TOI, Economic Times Comments Off on Till September 2009, 32.6 per cent of investment proposals worth Rs 3.06 lakh crore have already been implemented in Odisha; this is better than other states: ASSOCHAM

The above headlines is partly an excerpt from a Telegraph report. Following are excerpts from an Economic Times report by Nageswar Patnaik.

Orissa is currently implementing project proposals worth of Rs.3,06,575 crore, about 32.6% of total investment proposals received by the state government, which is higher compared to other states, according to the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM).

Releasing a Paper titled ASSOCHAM Strategy : “Creating and Sustaining Growth Momentum in Orissa” here on Wednesday at a press conference here by Assocham President, Swati Piramal and Secretary General, D S Rawat, however, said at the end of September 2009, the state had 486 live investment projects worth Rs 9.4 lakh crore.

“This is 27% higher than the live investment reported as on September 2008”, Dr Piramal said adding that the respective shares of electricity, manufacturing, mining and services sector in total live investment are respectively 42.8%, 34.7, 56.6% and 6.3%.

… Explaining the reason for the state having more than 65% of investment proposals at announcement stages, the Paper clarifies that lower implementation rate of projects, of late, has become a phenomenon across states in India. “ …

According to the Paper, more than 10% of total investments

announced by both government and private sectors in India as on March 2009 have gone into Orissa. The state has attracted Rs 9,28,834 crore out of a total of Rs 88,71,867 crore announced in India. The state’s share was mere 0.87% in the total investment undertaken by different government sources. “In contrast, the share of Orissa was 13.29% in total investment made by the private sector in India. All most all of the investment that Orissa has seen has come from the private sector while government sources accounted for insignificant amount (Rs 500 crores out of Rs 9.28 lakh crores)”, it adds. .

The Assocham has emphasized on the need for infrastructure development in the state for faster pace of economic growth. “Good infrastructure facilities would not only reduce the transaction costs of the established economic agents but also make the State an attractive destination for new investments. The critical elements of infrastructure development in India are leveraging public resources to access a large pool of private resources and providing an environment that help take advantage of liberalized policies”, the Paper argues.

I have not been able to locate the report from the ASSOCHAM site. If anyone finds it please leave an URL in the comment. Besides the positive news in the above paragraphs, one issue to note is that Odisha is only getting 0.87% of the government investments. I wonder what the number would be if it is narrowed to central government investment. My guess is that the number would be similar. Odisha must make efforts to get its fair share with respect to central government investment, and not just in mining and metal sector. In that regard in we listed the central PSUs in Odisha and India.


Business Standard focuses on a different aspect in the ASSOCHAM report. Following is an excerpt from the Business standard report.


Citing lack of new age industries in Orissa, the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM) today called upon the Orissa government to focus on the development of IT, real estate and service sectors.

It also laid emphasis on the development of human resources to bridge the skill gap and improve the employability of manpower in the state.

it strongly pitched for the development of infrastructure, focus on sunrise industries like pharmaceuticals, small and medium industries, adequate importance on climate change and global warming, removal of regional inequalities particularly in KBK districts and connecting the ports with the industrial corridors. Similarly, promotion of employment through cluster development, setting up of ancillary industries, linking industries to supply chain and creation of opportunities for self-employment need to be given priority. …

ASSOCHAM has suggested that the land acquisition need to be left to the buyers and sellers of land and the role of the state should be that of a facilitator only. The project proponents have a role to rehabilitate all those families being uprooted for a project.

On Orissa specific initiative, Rawat said, an Orissa Desk has been set up in Delhi to focus on the human resources development and the development of food processing industries. Berhampur University has been roped in as the partner for the purpose.

The desk is working on the growth of agriculture and food processing industries in the state and drafting Orissa Vision-2020 to provide a road map for the development of the state. An investment seminar called “Orissa Calling Investment”, is proposed to be held in Delhi in October this year to promote investment in the state, he pointed out.


Orissa MPs raise various issues in the parliament

Demanding equitable treatment, Kalahandi, Odisha issues in the Parliament, Odisha MPs, Railway network in Odisha, Railways Comments Off on Orissa MPs raise various issues in the parliament

Many of them raised various Railways related issue. MPs Bhakta Das and Sanjay Bhoi raised the issue about a medical college and a national university in Bhawanipatna. Following are news items from Dharitri and Samaja on this.

Following is an op-ed piece from Samaja on the Railways issue.

Orissa’s peeve with the center

CENTER & ODISHA, Demanding equitable treatment, Mine royalty and cess, Odisha Assembly, Odisha govt. action, Railway network in Odisha Comments Off on Orissa’s peeve with the center

Following is an excerpt from a report in Pioneer.

the BJD has decided to bring four resolutions against the Centre. “We will move resolution against the Centre for neglecting the cause of Odisha in the field of railway, for not increasing mine royalty in a regular manner and not giving its due share to the State, Centre’s negligence in providing help to the State to face the Maoist menace and Government’s failure to provide flood assistance to the State,” Mohanty added.

I agree with the above.


BHEL second unit to open in Trichy

Demanding equitable treatment, INDUSTRY and INFRASTRUCTURE 1 Comment »

Following is an excerpt from a report in Business Standard.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is likely to inaugurate the second unit of state-run Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL) in Tiruchirapalli by the end of this month, a top company official said here today.

"The Rs 750 crore plant is ready and we are waiting for dates from the Prime Minister’s Office to confirm his visit to Tiruchirapalli to inaugurate the plant," BHEL Tiruchirapalli complex Executive Director V Ananthakrishnan told reporters here.     

"Already we are recruiting 1,000 candidates per year and this year too we will recruit another 1000," he said, adding they would continue to recruit candidates at the same pace over the next three years.      

Orissa should make efforts to have similar non-metal processing and non-thermal power related public sector units in Orissa.

Manmohan’s 2nd innings also starts with humiliating Orissa

CENTER & ODISHA, Demanding equitable treatment, Elections 2009, UPA insults Odisha 6 Comments »

Update: The media coverage of the insult and its reaction is being archived at

When Manmohan Singh became the PM of India in 2004 one of the first things his government did was shift an announced for National Institute of Sciences (NIS) in Bhubaneswar to Kolkata and when Orissa MPs discussed with him about Orissa’ development he is reported to have replied "Money does not grow in trees." It took Orissa-wide demonstrations and a supreme court case for Dr. Singh to make amends and declare the establishment of a National Institute of Science Education and Research in Bhubaneswar. In 2004 he humiliated Orissa by not having a single minister from Orissa. Eventually he added a minister of state from Orissa. Somewhat similar to the NIS case, Dr. Singh’s HRD minister of state had mentioned in a speech in Patna that there will be an IIT in Orissa, but subsequently Orissa was not in the list. Again, after a lot of protests and demonstrations in Orissa, the PM  included Orissa as one of the locations of a new IIT.

Fast forward to 2009 and now Congress gets 6 Lok Sabha MPs from Orissa, 4 more than what it had in 2004. Among the 6 MPs is an ex-chief minister and a tribal (Hemanada Biswal)  who beat the national vice president of BJP in winning his seat, an ex-cabinet minister of parliamentary affairs and tourism, (Srikant Jena), an ex-minister of state of Railways (Bhakta Das), an ex state minister (Amarnath Pradhan), and two young MPs (one of them a tribal).

It is the PM’s prerogative to chose his team and there is no requirement that there has to be ministers from each state. After all these ministers are supposed to be ministers of all of India and it should not matter  where they come from or what their caste is; all that should matter is that they are qualified and they have the PM’s confidence. So objectively one shouldn’t have a problem that he has chosen only one minister of state from Orissa and chosen 3 cabinet ministers and one minister of state from Karnataka, where it got 6 MPs, the same number as Orissa. But the insult to Orissa comes from his demotion to the minister he chose from Orissa. He has picked as a minister of state, not even with independent charge,  Mr. Srikant Jena, who was earlier a cabinet minister  of India and had Parliamentary affairs and tourism as part of his portfolio. If Dr. Singh did not have confidence in Mr. Jena he need not have picked him. But what is he trying to convey by picking him and giving him a demoted position other than showing his and his party’s continued dislike and insulting attitude towards Orissa.

Dr. Singh: You have won the mandate and I guess like your earlier insult to Orissa when you were reported to have said "Money does not grow in trees", you can do whatever you like. But India is watching and they can see how you continue to insult a state and its people. People of Orissa, including those who recently voted for Congress, are fast losing faith on you and are dreading the next five years, where your ministers will take their booties to their home state.

This is not suppose to happen; your ministers are supposed to look after the whole country and not their own state; but based on the past 5 years, where your ministers have focused less on India as a whole and more on their own states, India’s poorer states, with little representation in your ministry are going to get poorer. For introspection, you may look at your past Railway minister’s boasting about what he did for his home state and compare it with states like Orissa from where it got the most revenue, and what you and your past HRD minister have done for higher education and science and technology for your respective home states.

As per Orissa, it seems like humiliating Orissa is your favorite sport or perhaps your lucky charm, as you seem to be again starting your innings with that.


Reaction from other quarters: 

High court asks center and state on loss to Orissa on faulty mine policies

Demanding equitable treatment, Mine royalty and cess, Odisha issues in the Parliament Comments Off on High court asks center and state on loss to Orissa on faulty mine policies

From Samaja:

From Dharitri:

Central ministers continue to treat central budget as their personal fief: When will they realize that they are ministers of India and not of their state or hometown?

Demanding equitable treatment Comments Off on Central ministers continue to treat central budget as their personal fief: When will they realize that they are ministers of India and not of their state or hometown?

Following is an excerpt from the article at

Sometimes it is quite difficult to understand why leaders from Bihar are so squeamish about helping their home state when leaders from other states are so brazen in doing this.  Defense Minister A K Antony has gone about making the defense PSUs set up their facility in Kerala.  Even non politicos like Dr Madhvan Nair have selected Kerala to set up "Indian Institute of Space Technology" at Thiruvananathpuram while being fully aware that Bihar does not have any ISRO center worth mentioning. I hardly find anyone questioning why the benefit of all the Farm Loan Waiver Schemes have been cornered by so called developed states like Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Tamilnadu. Moreover, I’m yet to see any one questioning as to how  Mr T R Balu has focused just on developing roads and sea ports in his home state of Tamilnadu only. As per his own claim, he has brought investment of over Rs. 50,000 crores ( Rs 33,000 crores in road sector and balance in ports) to Tamilnadu. Similarly, Mr Velu has lobbied hard to get Rs 7000 crore worth railway project approved for TN. Politicians from Andhra Pradesh were being indignant at their state being ignored. One must add up the fund Andhra Pradesh has cornered over last 10 years.
If the central government had not formulated the policies and its programs the way it has been doing till now, all these so called developed states would have been underdeveloped.  The states which have been the worst sufferers have been actually the states like Orissa, Jharkhand, MP and Chhatishgarh. If any state has any right to be indignant at all, it is only these states.

Bihar certainly deserves a better treatment now before it is too late for Indian Union to manage inequities between various states. Till date Bihar has been marginalized in setting up institutions and assets of national importance, putting it at huge economic disadvantage. As recently as last month, even in the case of ‘Institute of Translation Research’, Bihar’s case was ignored to favour Andhra Pradesh. How long the fellow countryman and the policy makers think that people of Bihar should meekly accept this discrimination. Central policy makers are so blatant that they have not even bothered to release a reconstruction and rehabilitation package for flood ravaged region of Kosi, as they did in case of other national calamities like Gujarat Earthquake and  Tamil Nadu Tsunami. It is hard to comprehend why different yardsticks are being followed for citizens of the same country. Most paradoxical thing has been that the central policy makers are focusing on developing regions which has been traditionally inimical to people coming from other parts of country and ignoring the ones which have been receptive all along.
Anyway, talking about the railway, Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav has only partially fulfilled the wishes of the people of state in this Interim Budget. He has made more noise and delivered less in this budget than his earlier budgets even while conceding that it was only an Interim Budget. I would have expected him to take up some railway lines for which surveys were announced in his previous budgets. Also, he has announced survey of Mono Rail for Patna last year with much fanfare but there is no confirmation whether the same is going to happen any soon now. After returning from Japan he forgot his old promise of Mono Rail and ended up on a new promise of Bullet Train which is even less likely to happen soon.  Of particular interest for state would have been announcement pertaining to a Rail Bridge between Chapra and Arrah over the Ganges River and perhaps two more at Bakhtiyarpur and Sahibganj over this mighty river. He could have also ventured to provide fast track connectivity for Kosi Region to the state capital by linking up Saharsa, Kusheshwarsthan, Samastipur and Hajipur using a rail Bridge on Kosi at Kusheswarsthan.
Though the minister has done a commendable job for Bihar over the last five years, yet he is leaving a lot of things incomplete.