Bhubaneswar: Ahead of Padampur by-election, BJD-led State Government and BJP-led Union Government are trying their best to woo the farmers, a major portion of voters in the Assembly Constituency.
The State Government has announced input subsidy for the drought-hit farmers, the Centre has taken steps for early release of claims under Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY).
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today announced input assistance of about Rs. 200 crores for the distressed farmers of the drought affected areas of the State including Padampur. The entire expenditure will be borne by the State Government.
As per reports, about 2,63,560 hectares of crop land in 64 blocks and 15 ULBs of 12 districts have suffered crop loss of 33 percent and above. So far, many of the affected farmers have not yet received their crop insurance dues despite continuous follow up and pursuance by the State Government with the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) under the Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare, Government of India.
In this context, considering the gravity of the situation, demands of the affected farmers and crop loss reports by the Collectors, the Chief Minister has decided to provide assistance out of the State’s own resources.
The Collectors of the affected districts have been directed to submit the requirement of funds to SRC and appropriate steps will be taken for immediate disbursement of assistance. It is estimated that about Rs.200 crore will be disbursed to overcome the distress of the farmers.
Similarly, Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said his Cabinet colleague Dharmendra Pradhan has discussed with him about the pending PMFBY claims of Bargarh farmers.
A decision in this regard has been given by the Technical Advisory Committee constituted under the Government of India and the concerned insurance companies, he said, adding, the State Government has also been instructed to issue claims with immediate effect. The Central Government is committed to clear the claims of farmers at the earliest, Mr.Tomar assured.
Reacting to the tweets made by Mr.Tomar, senior BJD leader and Rajya Sabha MP Sasmit Patra said it is clear now from your tweet that the pending Fasal Bima of farmers of Bargarh and especially Padmapur were pending all this while with Centre and now the Union Minister is asking insurance companies to pay.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and Cooperation Minister Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak have already intimated Mr.Tomar about the problems of the Bargarh farmers
“You are aware that payment is cleared by the Centre and insurance companies pay, the State does not have any role. Would have been better if the Centre had taken this decision earlier. Thousands of farmers of Bargarh and Padmapur would not have had to suffer for so long,” Dr.Patra said.
The BJD MP urged the Union Minister to clear all pending PMFBY claims for all farmers of Odisha and not only Padmapur as they are also suffering for long.
Both the ruling parties at State and Centre are trying hard to please the farmers of Padampur, who are on the protest path and approached all political parties not to take part in the by-poll scheduled for December 5. On their request, BJP candidate Pradip Purohit has already returned from RO’s office without filing nomination yesterday.