Dama clarifies, says landlords, not farmers, spend crop loan for amusement

Bhubaneswar: A day after claiming that farmers are utilising the crop loans to marry off their daughters and consume liquor, Excise and Cooperation minister Damodar Rout today hushed up the matter by taking a complete different stance on his previous remarks.

Clarifying his earlier version on misutilisation of farm loan, the veteran BJD leader said the land lords are spending the loan money in alcohol consumption. “I have not said that the ryots are utilising the loan for consuming alcohol. Rather they are deprived of availing loan which I have been demanding since long. But, the landlords are indulging in amusement with loan money by consuming liquor and marrying off their daughters”, Rout stated.

His clarification came in the wake of CM Naveen Patnaik’s rejection of the statement as ‘incorrect’ and sharp criticism from Opposition BJP. “I don’t think it is correct,” Patnaik said in reply to mediapersons.

On the other hand, BJP also came down heavily on the Paradip strong man and demanded an unconditional apology from him for making such irresponsible comments.

“It is an insult to the entire state and the farming community. He should tender unconditional apology and withdraw his statement. I think he showed a symbol defeat by making such comments,” BJP state president Basant Panda said.