Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday slammed Odisha government over its alleged 'anti-farmer' policies. The saffron party alleged that the State government has fully failed to develop agriculture and farmers' lives in Odisha. The Opposition party further alleged that the ruling BJD is only creating propaganda through its election manifesto.

Corruption Allegation

Odisha BJD president Manmohan Samal alleged that there have been massive irregularities in the procurement of rice. He alleged corruption of more than Rs 1 lakh crore in paddy procurement by the BJD government in the State.

"The ruling BJD has not provided irrigation facilities to the farmers of the State despite its promise in its election manifestos. Now, irrigation facilities are available only in 17 per cent lands of Odisha. Agriculture-based industries have been closed down. There are no cold storage facilities in the State. Though the government had promised to construct seven barrages on river Mahanadi, nothing has been done yet. Though the Centre is providing crores of rupees for providing irrigation facilities, the State government has done nothing in this regard. The government is only doing propaganda by giving false promises," alleged Samal in a presser.

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"The State government spent Rs 200 crore in 'potato and onion mission'. However, the mission failed completely as the government had no planning and will power to execute it. Farmers in the State are not getting minimum support prices in paddy and other produce. Farmers are getting exploited by the middlemen and millers. Beneficiaries of KALIA Yojana are yet to get their amounts as per the commitment of the State government. It's a conspiracy against the farmers," the senior BJP leader further alleged.

Samal assured transparency in paddy procurement and three times increase in the farmers' income if BJP is voted to power in Odisha.

"If BJP forms government in Odisha, income of farmers will increase thrice and paddy will be procured from the farmers at Rs 3,100 per quintal. The government will procure the entire amount of paddy from the farmers in a transparent manner. We will provide the payment to the farmers within 48 hours through direct benefit transfer. We are committed to providing irrigation facilities and set up cold storages in each block of the State," said Samal.

BJD's Response

Responding to the BJP's allegations, senior BJD leader Sasmit Patro accused the State BJP chief of shedding crocodile tears. "Where was the BJP for the last seven years if it was so concerned and wanted a hike in the MSP," asked Patra.

He further said that Manmohan Samal was silent for the last seven years and if he is making such statements today, then it can be termed hollow.

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