Farmers to request PM to merge their villages with Chhattisgarh

Jharsuguda: Farmers of 19 mouzas under Lakhanpur block in the district on Saturday decided to present a memorandum to Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to Bargarh on February 21 urging him to merge their villages with Chhattisgarh, if they are not provided basic facilities, including irrigation.

The decision was taken at a meeting of farmers at Kandehikala village today.

Janardan Panda, a farmer leader, said, “During Modi’s visit, we will present a memorandum and request him to merge the villages with Chhattisgarh, if Odisha government does not fulfill our demands.”

Gunanidhi Pradhan, another farmer, stated, “We have taken a vow that if the State does not do anything for farmers soon, we will continue our protest. We can see what the neighbour state, Chhattisgarh, is doing for their farmers.”

Meanwhile, Jharsuguda Collector Parameswaran. B said action is being taken to resolve the issue of the farmers.

“Their main issue is lack of proper irrigation facilities. At present, we are constructing five mega lift irrigation projects in the district at cost of Rs 100 crore. Of them, two projects are being undertaken in the Lakhanpur block. Besides, the present irrigation facilities will irrigate the farmlands in the area,” Parameswaran said.

Though four gram panchayats of 19 mouzas are surrounded by the Hirakud reservoir, acres of farmland remain dry causing displeasure among the locals.