Bhubaneswar: Odisha Assembly Speaker Surjya Narayan Patro has directed the Minister for Cooperation to procure Rabi paddy from the farmers.
Patra asked the concerned minister on Friday to immediately take measures in this regard after the opposition BJP members raised the issue in the House.
The opposition leader Pradipta Kumar Nayak raised the issue in the zero hour and alleged that although processing fees are charged from the farmers, paddy procurement has not been done so far. He alleged that paddy stocks in the mandis have germinated due to rain.
Nayak said the government should not rest peacefully after providing food at Rs 5. It is incumbent upon the government to procure paddy from farmers by giving them their due or else they will be frustrated and will not be able to raise the second crop.
The opposition leader said the farmers of Sambalpur are yet to get their dues. Congress legislative party leader Narasigha Mishra said the government has shown negligence as far as paddy procurement is concerned and added that it is high time that the government should take measures to the end.
BJP MLA Jayanarayan Mishra requested the Speaker to direct the government to look into the matter at the earliest as paddy stocks have germinated and the colour of paddy has been changed. The government must come to the rescue of farmers, he said.
It is worth mentioning here that the minister for food, consumer welfare and cooperation Ranendra Pratap Swain was not present when the issue was being raised in the House. The agriculture minister Dr Arun Sahu said on Thursday that the government has procured 55 metric tonne of paddy and added that more paddy will be procured soon.