50 lakh farmers in Odisha received financial assistance under KALIA scheme

Bhubandswar: Agriculture Minister Arun Kumar Sahoo has claimed that over 50 lakh farmers have so far received financial assistance from the Kushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA) scheme of the State Government.

Sahoo was speaking in the background of allegations of betrayal of farmers in the name of KALIA scheme by the opposition BJP and Congress.

During the campaign for the simultaneous Lok Sabha and State Assembly polls in the State in April, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had assured that his Government on the first day of its taking oath will release funds under the KALIA scheme.

“Over 50 lakh farmers have so far received financial assistance under the KALIA scheme and verification is on to include the leftout farmers,” Sahoo told reporters.

Union Minister Pratap Chandra Sarangi had claimed that the ruling BJD in the State had made false promises just to secure the farmers’ votes.

He had also said that the Government has not fulfilled its promises made to farmers before elections. The farmers have not yet received financial assistance under KALIA even one month after the new Government taking charge.

PCC president Niranjan Patnaik blamed the Naveen Patnaik Government of betraying the farmers by not giving financial assistance under the KALIA scheme. “The BJD Government has misled the farmers before elections,” he told.

Under the KALIA scheme, a farmer’s family is entitled to get Rs 10,000 per year in two instalments for Kharif and Rabi crops.

The opposition parties also accused the State Government of not purchasing paddy from the farmers and for closing down mandis without giving prior notice to cultivators.

The Minister, however, rejected the allegation and claimed that the State Government has targeted to procure 55 lakh metric tonne paddy this year and has so far collected 65 lakh metric tonne, which is 10 lakh metric tonne more than the targeted quantity.

Meanwhile, hundreds of farmers on Wednesday staged a road blockade near Jharkundamal Chhak on National Highway 26 in Dharmagarh of Kalahandi district over the alleged delay in paddy procurement.


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