Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan lashed out at the BJD government in Odisha accusing it of "failing" to maintain law and order which, he said, has led to "lawlessness" across the state.
Mr Pradhan's statement was immediately dismissed by BJD secretary (organization) P P Das, who in a series of tweets said, "Your (BJP) leader of opposition is a habitual offender and party's Yuva Morcha president has been facing murder charge. What message do you want to give by supporting these leaders?" The Union Education Minister on Monday alleged that senior police officers, including the director general of police and a few IPS officers are being used for political purpose in Odisha.
"The state is on the path of a system failure," Mr Pradhan said and blamed Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik over the alleged police excess on BJP Yuva Morcha and AVBP activists.
"Your (CM) Ravan-like ego (a reference to the Ramayana) won't last long in a democracy. Protesting Yuva Morcha and ABVP members have been sent to jail under Section 307 (attempt to murder)," he said.
The senior BJP leader said though BJD has been ruling Odisha for 23 years, the state of affairs relating to women is "bad". Maternal mortality rate and law and order concerning them are the two most worrying issues in the state.
These two issues are not political but social matters. These issues are needed to be addressed, he said.
Earlier in the day, a delegation of BJP MLAs led by Leader of Opposition Jaynarayan Mishra met Odisha Governor Ganeshi Lal and sought his intervention on the alleged police excess on the BJP's youth wing rally on February 28.
"The police is politically used by the ruling party and police brutality has crossed all limits. BJP and ABVP workers were booked under attempt to murder charges," Mr Mishra said.
As many as 22 BJP workers were arrested and sent to jail on the charge of assaulting the police in which 21 personnel were injured in a clash on February 28. Two ABVP leaders were arrested and sent to jail over a dispute in Utkal University.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)