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Naveen’s helicopter trip to Cuttack sparks controversy


It landed inside the “protected” historic Barabti Fort here

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s visit to Cuttack city to inaugurate at least six developmental projects here has sparked off a controversy.

Mr. Patnaik on Wednesday morning inaugurated a bridge over river Mahanadi in Banki sub-division. His helicopter landing inside the “Protected” zone of historic Barabati Fort here has irked environmentalists.

“Flying the helicopter over the protected monument is a violation under the Ancient Monument Preservation Act, 1904, and also under the Orissa Ancient Monument Preservation Act, 1956,” said environmentalist Biswajit Mohanty.

“Since the field on which the helicopter landed comes under the protected area of the Archaeological Survey of India, the central agency is authorised to prosecute the violator and impose penalty as per the Act,” Mr. Mohanty added.

The helicopter trip to cover a distance of only 20 kms from Bhubaneswar to Cuttack also came under strong criticism from his political opponents. It is believed that Mr. Patnaik was made to take the aerial route to avoid any kind of attack. The city police had made unprecedented security arrangements during the visit.

Mr. Patnaik laid two foundation stones and inaugurated one medical facility at the cancer and paediatric hospitals here.

He also inaugurated three other facilities for students at an engineering school and a university here.

ASI can prosecute, penalise the violator, says environmentalist Biswajit Mohanty

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Printable version | Dec 12, 2019 10:35:01 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/naveens-helicopter-trip-to-cuttack-sparks-controversy/article8190282.ece

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