Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik to hold farmers’ rally in Delhi on January 9

Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik to hold farmers’ rally in Delhi on January 9

Courtesy : Agencies07/01/2019 08:55

Odisha chief minister and Biju Janata Dal (BJD) president Naveen Patnaik has lined up a farmers’ rally at Delhi’s Talkatora Stadium on January 9 in protest against the central government.

Patnaik planned his maiden rally in the national capital to showcase the strength of his party ahead of the Lok Sabha and assembly elections scheduled later this year.

 According to BJD leaders, farmers from Odisha would visit Delhi for the rally to register their protest against the NDA-ruled central government.

 In a press meet held by the BJD peasants’ wing, Biju Janata Dal Krushak Cell, the party demanded that the Centre should raise the minimum support price (MSP) for paddy by at least 50% as was promised earlier.

“Like the last few years, this year, too, the Odisha government’s proposal for raising the MSP for paddy has been ignored by the central agriculture ministry,” said Pratap Jena, who is in charge of health, information and public relations in the Odisha cabinet, at the press meet in Delhi.

 “As the MSP for paddy being fixed by the central government is not commensurate with the rising input costs, the farmers in Odisha are deprived of getting a reasonable price for their produce.”

The central government has announced the MSP for common paddy at Rs 1,750 per quintal for the current Kharif season, while the Odisha government demanded it to be fixed at Rs 2,930 a quintal. Prasanna Acharya, BJD MP and leader of the party’s parliamentary wing in the Rajya Sabha, was present at the press meet.

 He said the rally would be an effort to highlight the plight of the Odisha farmers at the national level. In December, Patnaik had announced a special package of Rs 10,180 crore for all the small and marginal farmers of the state, tagging it Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA). Under the scheme, around five lakh farmers would get Rs 10,000 each in two installments for Rabi and Kharif crops for three years.

 The scheme will cover both landholding and landless farmers.

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