TO THE ODISHA LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY, Speaker and Hon’ble Members,
It gives me immense pleasure to welcome you all to the Sixth
Session of the 16th Odisha Legislative Assembly. Let me take this
opportunity to extend my heartiest New Year Greetings to all the Hon’ble
Members of this August House as well as to the people of Odisha.
2. This August House has expressed its deep condolences on the
the sad demise of Late Dr Pranab Kumar Mukherjee, Ex-President of
India, Late Sushila Devi, First Ex-Lady of the State, Late Sarat Kumar
Kar, Ex-Speaker, Late Haraprasad Mohapatra, Late Sahara Oram, Late
Sanatana Bisi and Late Sk. Matlub Ali all former Ministers, Late
Gurupada Nanda, Ex-Government Chief Whip, Late Pradeep Maharathy,
Late Madanmohan Dutta and Late Bishnu Charan Das all Sitting
Members, Late Prahallad Behera, Late Bira Sipka, Late Bijaya Kumar
Nayak, Late Purusottam Sethi, Late Arjun Charan Sethi, Late Nelson
Soreng, Late Ramamurty Mutika, Late Rabindranath Bhoi, Late
Abhimanyu Kumar, Late Chintamani Jena and Late Kartikeswar Patra all
former Members of this August House, Late Chandrakanta Pradhan, ExSepoy, Indian Army, Late Nuduram Soren, Ex-Naib Subedar, Indian
Army, Late Sudhir Kumar Tudu, Ex-SOG Commando, Late Debasis
Sethy, Ex-SOG Commando and Late Banawasi Moharana, Ex-Home
Guard all from Odisha Police.
3. I request Hon’ble Members to join me in paying tribute to Late
Surendranath Mishra, former Member of this August House and Late
Bibhuti Bhusan Nayak, Ex-Warrant Officer(GD) Assam Rifles, Late
Yajna Narayan Kar, Ex-SPR/EBR, 106 Engineer Regiment, Western
Command, Late Krushna Chandra Panda, Ex-Subedar, 14 Bihar
Regiment and all Corona Fighters laid their lives for the service of the
people during the face of the critical situation by Corona epidemic in the State.
4. The World has been witnessing unprecedented crisis since last
year. The Covid-19 pandemic has created havoc at a global scale
leading to severe damage across the Nation to public health,
economies, social and mental well-being of communities.
5. My Government had understood the severity at the very beginning
and has been pro-actively managing the situation as it emerged. Odisha
declared the pandemic as a State Disaster on 13th March 2020, even
before a single case was detected and took pro-active measures to
close the educational institutions, social gatherings, religious gatherings
etc. Odisha started the lockdown in the State on 21st March 2020, before
the National lockdown was announced. The Lockdown was managed in
a smooth manner without any major inconvenience to the general public.
The Police enforced with sensitivity without resorting to brute force. The
essential commodities supply was closely monitored from the source to the
last sale points.
6. My Government was conscious that strict lockdown will also affect
the livelihood of the poor. Therefore, a sensitive approach with social
security measures like advance pensions, PDS rations, free kitchens,
special support to vulnerable section etc was provided.
7. My Government recognised that such a large scale pandemic
cannot be managed without involving the Panchayati Raj Institutions and
the community. Therefore, Sarpanchs were empowered under the
Disaster Management Act to enforce and take appropriate measures in
their jurisdiction. They were actively involved in covid management.
8. My Government ensured smooth management of the Odia workers
returning home from other states due to the pandemic situation.
Arrangements were made for the migrant workers in Odisha to return to
9. My Government ensured that free quality treatment for the citizens
from the testing stage to critical treatment and until discharge. This is
one of the main reason for the low mortality in the State compared to
national and international mortality rates.
10. To motivate and honour the Covid Warriors and to unite the
society to fight against the pandemic situation, my Government had
organised the “Bande Utkala Janani” event and brought together the
Odias across the World.