Bhubaneswar, Jan. 4: The executive committee of the Odisha Pradesh Congress today decided to sharpen its attack on the Naveen Patnaik-led government for not agreeing to the Centre’s proposal of implementing direct cash transfer scheme in the state.
The party will also go to the people on another four issues — more rice for people living under BPL category, restoration of law and order, focus on the development of farmers’ livelihood and stop atrocities against women.
Pradesh Congress Committee president Niranjan Patnaik said: “The government is opposing the scheme, fearing that their double standards will be exposed if it is being implemented. People will come to know that many of the schemes, for which the Odisha government is taking the credit, are not its own scheme, including Rs 2-a-kg rice scheme.”
Stating that the BJD has ignored the farmers’ cause during the past 12 years, Patnaik said: “The area of agricultural land has come down by 2 per cent during the past five years and the farmers’ plights have gone up over the years.”
Union chemical and fertiliser minister Srikant Jena said: “The BJD-led government is playing the game of chicanery with the people of Odisha.”
The party decided that it would launch a public opinion on how the BJD was not distributing all the 35kg of rice, which was being allocated to each beneficiary under the BPL category. “We are allocating 35kg of rice. But, the Odisha government is giving 25kg of rice to the beneficiary. The issue will be raised before the public. We will ask them to return another 10kg to the people.” said a Congress leader.
Odisha food and civil supply minister Pratap Keshari Deb said: “They are giving rice for less number of people. But, we have to distribute it among a larger number, so the quantum of rice given to each person becomes less.”
The party also expressed the deterioration of law and order in Odisha. “The case of murder, rape, atrocities against SC and ST and women have gone upward. We will take up the issue seriously,” said former minister Kishore Chandra Patel.
An array of Congress leaders, including AICC leader Jagdish Tytler, was present during the brain storming session of the party.