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Tanima Ray

Bhubaneswar: Farmers under the aegis of Naba Nirman Krushak Sangathan (NNKS) attempted to gherao the office of Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) in Bhubaneswar protesting against the callous attitude of the State government towards their demands of price, prestige and pension. The farmers reportedly threatened to boycott elections if their demands are not fulfilled.

As per sources, the agitating farmers were on their way to meet the CEO to place their demands when the Police blocked their entry. As a result, a scuffle ensued between the protestors and the policemen.

"We came here to question the Election Commission if the government will give us price, prestige and pension. We did not intend any violence but were stopped by the Police. We will not return without speaking to the CEO and placing our demands. We won't allow any elections if our demands are not fulfilled. Why will a farmer vote when the Government provides no justice," said NNKS convenor Akshay Kumar.

"It is not just the BJD-government, the farmers suffer everywhere. Parties use us and forget us after the elections," said another agitating farmer.

Later, the Police arrested around 60 protestors who indulged in violence with the Police and tried to push open the gates of the Electoral office.

"We asked them to send a group of representatives to meet the officer yet they resorted to violence and tried to push the barricades and gate. As a result, we had to arrest them. About 60 protestors have been arrested until now and the Police is keeping a watch around the office," said, Bhubaneswar DCP, Anup Sahoo.

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