Orissa minister in soup over 'Harijan' remark

Two Dalit associations have already filed complaints against the senior minister at a local police station in the coastal district besides demanding his ouster from the state cabinet.

What has put Rout in more trouble is his own party members’ criticism against him on the issue. Some members of the BJD’s Jagatsinghpur district unit even staged a demonstration against the senior minister on Sunday.

While addressing a party meeting in the district last week Rout had remarked: “Bibhuprasad Tarai, CPI Lok Sabha member from Jagatsinghpur; Bishnu Das, MLA from the district; and additional district magistrate Upendranath Mallick are Harijans. All these Harijans have joined hands with some others and are hatching a conspiracy against me.”

Rout also represents Paradip, another Assembly constituency in Jagatsinghpur district.

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