Odisha to raise coal royalty issue at Eastern Zonal Council meet tomorrow


Bhubaneswar: The 24th Eastern Zonal Council meeting will be held at Lokseva Bhawan Convention Centre in Bhubaneswar on Friday. Chief Minister of five States – Odisha, West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand and Sikkim – will attend the meeting to be chaired by Union Home Minister Amit Shah.

Meanwhile, Odisha Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy informed media persons that the Government will raise issues like revision of coal royalty, development of disaster resilience infrastructure, expeditious implementation of rail link projects, smooth operation of coal mines, financial inclusion, grants to Gram Panchayats under 14th Finance Commission, devolution of powers to panchayat bodies, implementation of direct benefit transfer, telecom and internet connectivity, use of Aadhaar database.

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, is the Vice-Chairman and host of the meeting.  Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee and Jharkhand CM Hemant Soren will also participate.  The Chief Ministers will be accompanied by two Cabinet Ministers from each State, as members of the Council, and Chief Secretary and other senior officers of the States.

Secretaries and Additional Secretaries and other senior officers of the Central Government will also attend the meeting. Shah will arrive at Biju Patnaik International Airport at 10.10 am and will be driven straight to Lokseva (Secretariat) Convention Centre where he will chair the meeting.

The last meeting of the Eastern Zonal Council was last held in Kolkata on October 1, 2018.


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