Mrunal Manmay Dash

An Ama Odisha Nabin Odisha awareness programme at Artung Panchayat under Bhadrak’s Basudebpur block saw a scuffle between a ward member and former Sarpanch over allegations of false promotion of Odisha government schemes.

As per reports, a ward member of Artung Panchayat Gouranga Behera alleged that his name and picture had been falsely used in the Nabin Odisha promotional booklets as a beneficiary of Rs 25,000 assistance from the government. Behera further alleged that the name and picture of his wife have also been used as a beneficiary of the BSKY scheme, while his wife never availed the scheme.

Behera confronted the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) members and a former Sarpanch at the Nabin Odisha programme and asked them about the false promotion, they allegedly scuffled with him and hit him with chappal.

“I saw leaflets and flyers were being distributed at the Panchayat Office. I received one too. But when I read the leaflet, I saw my name and picture on it claiming to have received Rs 25,000 per annum as government assistance.”

“Though I have received money under KALIA scheme, it is only Rs 8000. BJD is using my name to falsely promote their schemes. When I went to the meeting and asked about the false promotion, they misbehaved with me and even hit me with shoes,” he alleged.

Former Sarpanch and BJD member Sagarika Sethi said, “They have received assistance under government schemes after verification through their Aadhaar cards. They are trying to tarnish the image of the government. Their family is harassing us. I am innocent. I do not have anybody to fight for me.”

Asked about the allegations, Basudebpur BDO, Sanjiv Kumar Sahu said, “I have not received any such complaints. If I get a complaint and I find that to be true then appropriate action will be taken.”

In another Ama Odisha Nabin Odisha programme at Mandibisi Panchayat in Rayagada’s Kashipur block, the locals gheraoed the Panchayat Officer and scuffled with him after failing to get food at the event.

As per reports, the Ama Odisha event was organised at the panchayat to aware locals about the Ama Odisha Nabin Odisha initiative. However, the people reportedly returned home in the middle of the event after finding out that there was a shortage of food.

“10-15 persons came at the end of the programme and created a ruckus in the event alleging shortage of food. They even brought some ladies with them and said that they did not get food. I asked them to wait for some time so that I could arrange food for them, but they did not listen and scuffled with me,” said Panchayat Extension Officer Bijay Bidika.