Ruckus in Odisha Assembly over distress sale of vegetables

Bhubaneswar: Opposition Congress members today created pandemonium in Odisha Assembly over alleged distress sale of vegetables by farmers across the state, forcing multiple adjournments of the House.

Congress members raised the issue during Zero Hour and demanded compensation for the farmers resorting to distress sale of vegetables due to lack of cold storages and effective marketing link in tribal dominated districts like Keonjhar, Koraput, Rayagada and Bargarh.

Led by Chief Whip Taraprasad Bahinipati, they created ruckus in the house demanding reply from Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, agriculture minister and cooperation minister who looks after cold storages.

They rushed to the well of the House and shouted slogans against the government. Some of them also tried to climb the Speaker’s podium.

Bahinipati said that the farmers of Keonjhar district yesterday dumped qunitals of fresh tomatoes on the road in front of the Collector’s office after being unable to sale the produces at proper price.

They even could not get 50 paise per kg of tomatoes in Keonjhar and therefore preferred to dump them on roads, Bahinipati said adding that farmers of Rayagada, Koraput and Bargarh districts had also faced similar situation earlier.

They also alleged that the financial backbone of farmers has been broken due to demonetisation.

Speaker Niranjan Pujari’s repeated calls to keep the House in order fell in deaf ears.

Unable to run the House, Pujari adjourned the house twice till 3 PM.

When the House resumed at 3 PM, the similar situation continued and the Speaker adjourned the house for the day.

Except the Question Hour, no proceedings could be carried out because of the melee.