Cong leaders from Orissa meet PM, raise farmers` issue
New Delhi: Congress leaders from Orissa on Tuesday met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and requested that a "correct assessment" be made of the damage caused to farmers due to untimely rains in the state last year.
The delegation led by state Congress chief K P Singhdeo also demanded that the fare average quality norms for Orissa be abolished in the larger interest of the farming community in the state.
"The meeting with the Prime Minister lasted for about 25 minutes during which we said that that the damage assessment conducted by the state government there is incorrect and it should be assessed once again taking the villages as units," the OPCC chief said.
The party had earlier demanded that the state government must come out with an adequate compensation package for the distressed farmers who should be provided fertilisers, seeds and pesticides free of cost for the rabi season.
Crop loan of farmers should also be completely waived off, they said.
Asserting that farmers of all the 30 districts of the state should be provided compensation, Singhdeo also said BPL families should be directly provided rice by the Government at Rs 2 per kg.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had last month also met the Prime Minister and Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar and had sought the Centre`s support.
He had said that during the last six months of 2010, 73 per cent of the villages in the state had been affected due to calamities. He had said that over 19000 hectares of the cropped area in the state had faced crop loss.
A Central team had also visited the state to assess the damage to crop last month.
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