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Pandemonium in Odisha assembly over farmers’ issues

After staging a sit-in on the Assembly premises, members of the BJD and BJP approached Governor Ganeshi Lal separately to air their grievances and to lodge protests.

BJD MLAs stage a protest near Mahatma Gandhi statue during the winter session of Odisha Assembly demanding an increase of MSP and insurance for farmers, in Bhubaneswar. (PTI Photo)

THE ODISHA Assembly on Friday failed to transact business amid ruckus as the fight over farmers’ issues echoed in the House with members of both Treasury and Opposition benches raising the matter to target each other.

As the opposition BJP and Congress members, who were in the well of the House even before beginning of the day, started sloganeering against the state government, accusing it of being “anti-farmer”, the ruling BJD MLAs also rushed to the well leading to a face-off. The pandemonium led to repeated adjournments of the House by Speaker Bikram Keshari Arukha.

While the Opposition trained guns on the state government over issues such as delay in payment of crop insurance, input subsidy assistance and discrepancies in paddy procurement, the BJD MLAs took on the BJP-led Centre for not hiking the minimum support price of paddy to Rs 2,930 per quintal.

After staging a sit-in on the Assembly premises, members of the BJD and BJP approached Governor Ganeshi Lal separately to air their grievances and to lodge protests.

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Briefing reporters outside Raj Bhavan, senior BJD MLA and former minister Shashi Bhusan Behera said the Centre has been dilly-dallying in taking a stand on state’s unanimous proposal to increase the minimum support price of paddy to Rs 2,930 per quintal.

“Because of the Centre’s inaction, the farmers in Odisha are not able to get their insurance amount under the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana. Also, the BJP government at the Centre is adopted anti-farmer stand in terms of procuring parboiled rice from Odisha. We have conveyed our grievances to the governor through a memorandum,” said Behera.

The BJP MLAs alleged that the farmers of the state are being deprived in every sector because of the inefficiency of the state government. They said BJD raises farmers’ issues only when elections are around.

First published on: 25-11-2022 at 19:00 IST
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