Agri minister Maharathy faces protest, this time in Nuapada

Bhubaneswar: With a spike in farmer suicides in the State in recent months due to alleged crop failure and burden of agriculture loan, Odisha ministers continue to face protest-demonstrations across the State during their visit to districts to assess the drought situation.

On the second consecutive day, Agriculture minister Pradeep Maharathy today witnessed an embarrassing situation when about a dozen followers of Opposition BJP and Congress protested his Barapadar visit in Khadial of Nuapada district.

Sources said the irate part workers blocked the road of Maharathy and did not allow him to proceed to visit the drought-affected areas in the region. They entered into a tussle with the police for quirte some time. Some activists too pelted eggs at the minister prompting the police to arrest at least five.

Yesterday Maharathy and Sports and Youth Affairs Minister Sudam Marandi were shown black flags by supporters of opposition political parties during their visit to Balangir and Ganjam districts respectively. In another incident, Sports and Youth Affairs Minister Sudam Marandi faced an embarrassing situation during his visit to Ganjam district yesterday. Some BJP workers blocked Marandi’s road and showed black flags to him.

On Wednesday as many as 15 BJP workers were detained on the charge of opposing the visit of Industries and School and Mass Education Minister Debi Prasad Mishra, Energy Minister Pranab Prakas Das and Finance Minister Pradip Kumar Amat to Boudh district.