Bhubaneswar: The hartal organsied by the ruling BJD in undivided Koraput district in protest against the Polavaram project began in Malkangiri, Nabarangpur, Rayagada and Koraput districts on Thursday.
While Commerce and Transport Minister Ramesh Chandra Majhi is leading the protest in Malkangiri district, Energy Minister Pranab Prakash Das, Higher Education Minister Pradeep Panigrahy and Housing and Urban Development Minister Puspendra Singh Deo are supervise the hartal in Koraput, Rayagada and Nabarangpur, respectively.
Shops and business establishments remained closed bandh and vehicular movement was also off the road as the BJD activists staged demonstrations at different places of the districts.
However, emergency services were spared from the bandh, which is being observed from 7 am to 5 pm on Thursday.
The ruling party has also staged a dharna in front of Raj Bhavan in Bhubaneswar.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said the State will fight for its rights.
“Odisha will fight for its rights in Polavaram to the finish. BJD rallies at Bhubaneswar & undivided Koraput districts on January 7,” Naveen tweeted.
According to the State Government report, a total of 6, 818 persons, from the State, 5, 916 of them tribals, will be affected and displaced due to the controversial Polavaram project in Andhra Pradesh. Besides, 7,656 hectares of forest land and 26 villages will be submerged.