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Mrunal Manmay Dash

Amid chaos in the ongoing monsoon session of Odisha Assembly, the Opposition parties on Friday raised a unanimous voice seeking the government to declare drought in the State before taking urgent necessary steps for mitigation of the natural disaster.

Both the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress slammed the Odisha government for taking little or no measures in tackling the drought situation in the State which has erupted in the wake of a serious deficiency in precipitation this season.

A party delegation of the BJP led by senior leader Manmohan Samal visited Bolangir and Nuapada districts and discussed the ground situation with farmers who have lost their crops to erratic rainfall.

As per reports, the team took stock of the state of affairs in Puintala, Sadar block, Patnagarh, Muribahal and Bangomunda in Bolangir.

Speaking in this connection to media personnel in Nuapada, Samal said, “We demand the government to declare drought and pay compensation to farmers from the calamity relief fund which I had set up during my tenure as the Revenue Minister in 2007-08."

Similarly, a Congress delegation also toured Boudh, Sonepur, Bolangir and Nuapada districts to look into the circumstances. Targeting the State government, President of Congress Kisan Cell, Amiya Patnaik said, “This drought is man-made and the State government is entirely responsible for it. The farmers are suffering because of a poor irrigation system in these areas of the State.

“The State government has left the farmers on neither their own without providing them with irrigation facilities nor any compensatory provision for crop loss,” alleged Patnaik.

Meanwhile, a review meeting was held at the Krishi Bhavan in Bhubaneswar on Friday under the chairmanship of State Agriculture Minister Arun Sahu.

Sahu took to social media to share an image of his meeting with officials on the situation.

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