Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Tuesday begins an eight-day trip to Britain, his first visit to a foreign country since he took over 12 years ago, an official said.
Patnaik leaves for New Delhi Monday and then proceeds to London Tuesday. Patnaik is slated to hold talks with Britain’s Department for International Development (DFID).
Two state ministers and five senior state officials will be accompanying the chief minister, B.P. Mohanty, director of the state information and public relations department, told IANS.
DFID has been supporting the state for the past few years in different areas, including in tackling malnutrition, poverty, education, infrastructure and health, by pumping an enormous amount of funds.
Patnaik, who hasn’t travelled abroad since he took over as chief minister in 2000, is also scheduled to inaugurate the first Odisha handloom show at London. He is also scheduled to visit the Institute of Development Studies in Sussex.
“The tour will add a new chapter to the state’s relations with Britain. It will also bring economic prosperity for the state,” Sanjay Dasburma, president of the youth wing of the state’s ruling Biju Janata Dal, said in a statement.