Bhubaneswar, Dec 14 The Odisha Assembly today witnessed unruly scenes and was adjourned for at least five times with the opposition Congress and BJP creating ruckus over alleged illegal detention of farmers across the state before their rally in the state capital.
While Congress members repeatedly demonstrated in Well of the House, BJP MLAs criticised the government for action against a peaceful agitation by the farmers.
The BJP members also staged a walkout and sat on a dharnain front of the Mahatma Gandhi statue in the Assembly premisesfor being denied permission to speak on the issue.
The farmers were allegedly detained by the police and prevented from attending a rally convened by the Nabanirman Krushak Sangathan (NKS) in front of the Assembly today.
"This (BJD) government has admitted that it is a liar. Now by detaining farmers on their way to the rally, the government has proved to be a coward. This is undemocratic, unconstitutional and unacceptable," Leader of Opposition Narasingha Mishra said adding, the farmers were not Maoists.
Stating that the farmers were arrested under the provision of the Criminal Procedure Code, Mishra said the government has no right to take anyone into custody for making a genuine demand.
"I think the farmers' demands are genuine and justified. They have been demanding proper price for their produce, prestige and pension for elder farmers. They were coming to the state capital to draw attention of the government," Mishra said. The Leader of Opposition demanded an apology from the Chief Minister for the police "torture" on farmers.
"The Chief Minister must tender apology for the police action, discuss with the agitating farmers and resolve the issue," Mishra said dubbing the state government "anti-farmer." Rejecting the Congress allegation, government Chief Whip Ananta Das said the government has taken a number of measures for the farming community.
"The Chief Minister had direct interaction with farmers at Sohole in Bargharh district and announced bonus on paddy. Odisha is the second state after Karnataka to have a separate agriculture budget," Das said.