Ruckus in Odisha assembly over paddy procurement issue

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Bhubaneswar, Mar 12 (PTI) The opening day of the second phase of Odisha Assembly's budget session on Friday witnessed noisy protests by the opposition BJP and Congress members over alleged mismanagement in paddy procurement across the state.

Members of both the opposition parties rushed to the well of the House as soon as it assembled for the question hour at 10.30 over the issue.

Unable to run the proceedings, Speaker SN Patro adjourned the proceeding first till 11.30 am and later till 4 pm.

The second leg of the budget session of the assembly will continue till April 9.

'We will not allow the house to function till paddy are procured from farmers at different mandis across the state.

The Speaker should give a ruling for immediate paddy procurement,' said Congress whip Taraprasad Bahinipati outside the house.

Bahinipati and other Congress members staged protest in the well.

'The government has cheated people and the opposition by not lifting the paddy from different mandis despite a decision taken in the all party meeting during the first phase of the budget session,' Congress Legislature Party leader Narasingha Mishra said.

BJP members also raised the same issue and joined the Congress members in staging agitation in support of the demand for immediate procurement of paddy in different mandis.

They alleged that the state government has not taken any step to address the concerns of the farmers.

Meanwhile, BJP moved a notice for a discussion on the prevailing forest fire in different jungles including the Similipal National Park, in the state.

Government chief whip Pramila Mallick said they are ready to discuss every issue to be raised by the opposition members.

During the second part of the session, the main focus of the government will be to get various demands for grants for the financial year 2021-22 passed along with the Finance Bill.

The Appropriation Bill on the budget for the year 2021-22 will be presented on March 31.

The first phase of the budget session of the assembly had ended on February 27.

Finance Minister Niranjan Pujari had presented the annual budget for the fiscal 2021-22 on February 22. PTI AAM SNS SNS