KALIA Money Recovery: Opposition Demands Complete Waiver
Bhubaneswar: The Leader of Opposition, Pradipta Nayak has demanded complete waiver of money disbursed under the Odisha government’s KALIA scheme to people, who were later declared ineligible.
In a video statement issued on Monday, Nayak said that Odisha government’s decision to postpone the recovery of KALIA money from ‘ineligible’ beneficiaries due to the Coronavirus pandemic will not suffice; rather it should scrap the plan of recovering money from the farmers.
Nayak alleged that “The people did not ask for the money. It is the government that offered them the money ahead of the elections eying their votes.”
“The government has taken a u-turn and postponed its drive to recover KALIA money from ineligible beneficiaries fearing backlash from the farmer community,” added Nayak.
In a scathing attack on the government, Nayak questioned, “When asked about the veracity and eligibility of the beneficiaries, the then Agriculture Minister had clarified that there are no ineligible farmers in the KALIA list. From where did these ineligible beneficiaries come from?”
Nayak further said that if at all there are any ineligible farmers left in the system, then the money should be recovered from the erring officials who did not verify the beneficiaries before putting their names on the list.
It is pertinent to mention here that, the Odisha government had launched Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA) scheme in 2019 just before the general elections, under which farmers were paid Rs 10,000 in two instalments.
A recent official notification stated that the government has decided to suspend the recovery process in view of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic situation and the Kharif agricultural crop operations.
(Edited By Bikram Keshari Jena)