Paddy Procurement Scam: Cooperation Minister asks to submit report in 15 days

Bhubaneswar: With the Opposition Congress repeatedly targeting the ruling-BJD over the alleged involvement of its Kendrapara district president in the paddy procurement scam that surfaced in 2015-16, Cooperation Minister Surya Narayan Patro on Monday ordered an investigation into the scam and asked to submit a report in this regard within 15 days.

As per sources, a special officer has been appointed to carry out a detailed investigation into the alleged irregularities through house-to-house verification of the 163 farmers.

“I had already given orders for investigation into the Kendrapara paddy procurement scam during the calling-attention raised in the Assembly. Paddy purchased from the 163 farmers, those who had received cheques and those who received direct payment, I have directed for a house-to-house verification to find out who is an actual farmer and who is a fake farmer. The report will be submitted to me within 15 days.”

As per reports, Congress MLA from Rajnagar Anshuman Mohanty had leveled allegations against senior BJD leader and Kendrapara district president Dhruba Sahoo stating his involvement in the 2015-16 paddy procurement scam.

Major irregularities in procurement of paddy in Kendrapara in 2015-16 were reported and as per Mohanty’s allegations, a list of fake beneficiaries was prepared by Sahoo. Such discrepancies were spotted then by the Markfed manager who brought it to the notice of his higher-ups and the report was telecast on OTV.

The Congress MLA had also written to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik twice and appraised him about the corruption in the procurement unit in the district.