BARGARH:A day after doling out the promised special drought assistance (SDA) of `100 per quintal of paddy to the drought-affected farmers, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Sunday reiterated his commitment for the development of farming and farmers during his visit to the district.
The Chief Minister went on an inauguration and stone laying spree in the district. He inaugurated and laid foundation stones for 22 development projects, including bridge at the site of old bridge over river Jeera passing through Bargarh old town.
Addressing a gathering on the high school ground in Bijepur in the district on Sunday, Naveen said SDA will benefit one lakh farmers in the district and the State Government will pay `270 crore against the assistance. He revealed that 11, 60,000 farmers will get crop insurance amounting to `1170 crore and the Centre has agreed to their proposal.
Stressing on strengthening irrigation in the State, he said his Government had envisaged to provide irrigation to 10 lakh hectares of land through deep bore wells, check dams and irrigation projects.
Aware of the fact that farmers comprise a majority of the population in the district, he also highlighted medical insurance and agriculture loan at one per cent besides loan for higher education at one per cent.
Reassuring the farmers that there is no dearth of funds for farming and farmers in the State, Naveen said district collectors have been issued direction to take up issues of farmers on priority.
Earlier, the Chief Minister also addressed people at Raj Bodasambar High School ground in Padampur sub-division besides inaugurating and laying foundation stones for eight development projects, including expansion of airstrip at Satibhata near Padampur. He also inaugurated a 100-bed hostel at Padampur Women’s College, Bindyabasini Mahavidyalaya, Paikmal and Nrusinghanath ST High School, Paikmal.
However, the BJP led by MLA Pradip Purohit opposed the visit of the Chief Minister and staged dharna at Gandhi statue at Nrusinghanath Temple premises. Purohit had sought audience with Naveen to apprise him about the problems of the sub division but was denied an appointment.