Surjya Patro offers to quit daring Opposition to prove paddy procurement below MSP

Bhubaneswar: The State Cooperation Minister Surjya Narayan Patro challenged the Opposition to prove allegations that paddy is being procured at prices below the stipulated MSP of Rs 1750 per quintal in mandis across Odisha and said that he will quit politics if the allegations are true.

Patro’s comments came during a press conference today where he refuted allegations levelled by the BJP and other Opposition parties that paddy is being sold at prices lower than the MSP in the State.

The Minister gave details of this year’s paddy procurement and said that the Opposition parties are levelling allegations without any proof.

“Around 21.61 lakh MT of paddy procured during the Kharif season is nearly 18 % more compared to last year’s total procurement and 12.6 lakh farmers have registered themselves to participate in paddy procurement this year,” Patro said.

The Minister said that in comparison to last year’s Kharif season, nearly 2, 22, 000 additional farmers registered this year over and above last year’s total of 11,20,000 farmers. Patro also said that the number of mandis also increased to 3,013 from 2,929 last year.

Responding to Patro’s statement, Vice-President of Odisha BJP, Samir Mohanty said, “We have the proof that paddy is being procured at lower prices. Surjya Narayan Patro should stop rubbing salt on the  wounds of Odisha farmers.”