Akshaya Trutiya observed amid mudslinging by politicians

Bhubaneswar: Even as large parts of the state are in the grip of drought, farmers in Odisha sowed the first seeds of the year on the auspicious occasion of Akshaya Trutiya today with the hope of a bumper harvest while political parties engaged in mudslinging over agrarian issues.

The ruling party, which observed the Akhi Muthi programme at Laxmi Narayanpur in Pipili of Puri district, targeted the BJP saying that the national party is following the path of Naveen Patnaik but would not succeed.

Targeting Petroleum minister Dharmendra Pradhan, State Agriculture minister Pradeep Mharathy, who is known for his sarcastic remarks, said; “Even thousands of needles canot become a crowbar. I would like to make ti clear that the BJD has never held such programme as a party event. This is purely a farmers’ function. But, BJP is running its programme with the money extracted from the oil sector,”

Addressing a Akshaya Trutiya programme at Kandarpur in Cuttack, Pradhan countered the State agriculture minister. He said a day will come when BJD would appropriate even the Ratha Yatra.

“Maharathy is saying that Akhi Muthi programme was initiated by them (BJD). Some day, they (BJD) would say that Ratha Yatra of Lord Jagannath was also introduced by them. May God give them wisdom,” said a sarcastic Pradhan.

On the other hand, Congress flayed both the State and Central governments for what it called its apathetic attitude towards the plight of farmers.

“Neither the State government nor the Centre has paid any heed to the plight of the farming community even as 250 farmers have committed suicide this year over agrarian issues. Both (State and Centre) have turned a deaf ear to the farmers’ demands,” PCC president Prasad Harichandan said on the occasion of Akhi Muthi programme at Balianta on the outskirts of Bhubanswar.