Dilip Kumar

Dhenkanal: The new Farm Laws envisage increase in the income of farmers and is meant to make them self reliant under Prime Minister Modi's flagship programme 'Atma Nirbhar Bharat', said Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Saturday.

Addressing a mega 'Krushak Samabesh’ rally in Dhenkanal, the Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas said the Prime Minister has prepared a comprehensive plan to double the income of farmers by enacting new legislations. The Centre has adopted so many measures to commercialise the agriculture which would benefit the farmers unlike previous years, he said.

Coming down heavily on the Opposition parties who have been protesting the new Farm Laws, Pradhan said that they have made a failed attempt to mislead the peasants.

"A sense of fear is being created in the mind of farmers that their lands would be taken away by the corporate houses and the Minimum Support Price (MSP) of their products would be abolished. The Congress party is spreading such deceptive information while the BJD- the ruling party in Odisha is instigating them", Pradhan maintained.

The Minister further claimed that the MSP had stood at Rs 1310 in 2013-14, which has now reached at Rs 1815. "Modi has sent the money from Centre while substantial chunk of it has been misappropriated by the State. At mandis, tokens are distributed on the basis of party. There is nexus between the BJD leaders and the millers, which has emerged as a bane for the farmers", he alleged.

Lashing out at the Odisha Cooperative Minister Ranendra Pratap Swain, the Union Minister said the cooperative loan irregularities that have been levelled against the brother of the Odisha Minister is not confined to Athagarh only, but it has also taken place in Gondia, Pallahara and Athmallick area of undivided Dhenkanal district. The incident has grabbed headlines, Pradhan maintained.

"You (BJD) will bear the brunt of farmers, if you cheat them", the Petroleum Minister warned.

He said that Modi has sent Rs 60,000 crore in last six years for the benefit of farmers in Odisha. Why are farmers being deprived of the central benefits? Why the Odisha government didn't provide the list of illegible farmers to centre? he asked.

The Union Minister appealed to the farmers to strongly oppose any irregularities at the Mandi at their respective region.