Minister bats for tainted pvt seed firm

Bhubaneswar: New chapters are being added into the allegations of irregularities over supply of onion seed every passing day. Agriculture minister Pradeep Maharathy has written to the Seed Corporation for release of payment to West Bengal Hybrid Seeds and Biotech for supplying onion seeds.

The copy of the letter, which is in possession of the channel, said the State government will not be responsible in any way if the rest of the payment is not released to the company.

The letter sent on September 29 has been written when the State Vigilance report on onion seed scam has not been submitted.
Agriculture department joint director Prabasee Sethi alleged it would not have been possible without a nexus between minister, the company and government officials.

“Even the minister recently put pressure to clear dues of the company,” Sethi added.

Meanwhile, State Congress President Prasad Harichandan lamabasted the State government saying that the nexus and onion seed scam has come to the light and general public should interfere into it.

Putting similar views, senior BJP leader Bijoy Mohapatra said the scam would not have been possible with the blessings of the minister. “If it wants to come clean, it should immediately file criminal cases against the officers against whom allegations are being levlled,” Mohapatra added.

Former Agriculture minister Damodar Rout also confided that at some places the onion seeds provided by the government did not yield good harvest.

Refuting the charges, BJD spokesperson Amar Satapathy said, “No one is being shielded. If the inquiry report finds anyone guilty, proper action will be taken against him.”