Odisha Police stops agitating farmers on way to mega rally

Bhubaneswar: Tension erupted at different places across the State today when thousands of farmers were taken into preventive custody while they were on their way to attend a mega rally organised by Naba Nirman Krushak Sangathan (NNKS) in Bhubaneswar today.

In Jajpur, several farmers were detained by police personnel near Chandikhol leading to tension in the area. Vehicular movement on the NH-16 was disrupted after the farmers protested their detention. Later NNKS national convener, Akshay Kumar and former parliamentarian Baijayant Panda reached the spot to pacify the agitating farmers.

“At present the situation in the State is even worse than that of Emergency period. The then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi had lost power because of the Emergency, while Congress had to lose power following atrocities on social activist Anna Hazare. The way the State government is torturing farmers and trying to fool them with the KALIA scheme, they will undoubtedly get a befitting reply in a few months,” said Akshay Kumar.

In Cuttack, police also detained thousands of farmers near Trisulia and Munduli Chhak while they were on their way to Bhubaneswar.

Twin City Police Commissioner Satyajit Mohanty said the farmers had plans to stage an economic blockade in Bhubaneswar due to which they were prevented from coming to Bhubaneswar.

“They had called for an agitation in Bhubaneswar and they had plans to gherao the Secretariat. From intelligence inputs, we got to know that they were planning for an economic blockade here, which would have affected many people,” added Mohanty.

Meanwhile, Agriculture Minister, Sashi Bhusan Behera said “If Akshay Kumar has any sympathy towards farmers; he should cooperate with the State government in implementing the schemes which have been rolled out for farmers. Instead of protesting, he should ensure that farmers should get the benefits.”