**Bhubaneswar: ** Despite the resolution, seeking paddy MSP (minimum support price) hike to Rs 2,930 per quintal, passed in the Odisha Assembly in its last Budget Session and a 17-member House Committee led by the Speaker and comprising members from all parties has been constituted to meet the Prime Minister, the Prime Minister Office (PMO) is yet to fix appointment.
While such a development has peeved the ruling BJD Government and main opposition Congress, PM Modi’s BJP unit in Odisha blames the Naveen Patnaik-led government here for such a mess and allege the State Government’s anti-farmer stand.
The House Committee on Friday again met to discuss the paddy MSP issue and decided to knock the doors of Prime Minister yet again.
Briefing media Agriculture Minister Damodar Rout said that the State Government will try to meet PM Modi by June 30 to discuss the MSP demand.
During the meeting of the House Committee on paddy MSP, Rout said that the State Government will again try to get appointment of the Prime Minister to discuss the issue.
Briefing media soon after the meeting, former Food and Civil Supplies Minister Sanjay Das Burma claimed, “The PMO did not give them time even after request for appointment earlier over the MSP issue as per the House Committee’s terms of reference. The PMO instead proposed to meet the Union Agriculture Minister which was turned down in the House Committee meeting today. Since it is a house panel led by the Speaker, the PMO has been urged for appointment once again.”
Leader of Opposition Narasingha Mishra commented, “It was unanimously resolved in the Odisha Assembly. But the PMO has not yet given green signal. It’s extremely unfortunate and condemnable. Resolution was passed today to request the Prime Minister’s appointment once again. Odisha Assembly secretary had contacted the PMO over telephone. It implies the Prime Minister is not interested to meet our House Committee. When the Prime Minister brags himself to be people’s prime minister, why is he scared of meeting the panel on the farmers’ issue?”
BJP Legislature Party leader in Odisha Assembly K.V. Singhdeo defended, “If the State Government here is so concerned about the farmers, it should at least pay them the present paddy MSP of Rs 1,470 per quintal. Today the State Government here is purchasing paddy at its mandis at Rs 800-900 per quintal. They are not paying the minimum support price to the farmers. This is the government here who dubs the reason behind the farmer suicide as domestic dispute and criticising the Modi Government.”