BHUBANESWAR: Youth Congress activists today splattered eggs on the carcade of Union agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh in front of the high-security state guest house as he was being driven to Jatni for an official programme.
The activists also showed black flags and staged a demonstration to protest the death of six farmers in police firing in Mandsaur district in Madhya Pradesh.
Police arrested five Youth Congress activists including the working president of the Odisha Pradesh Youth Congress (OPYC) Loknath Maharathy.
Before he was taken into custody, Maharathy said “Radha Mohan Singh has no moral right to remain in the agriculture ministry after the killing of farmers in Madhya Pradesh."
BJP leaders said the eggs did not land on the minister's car. They condemned the incident and blamed the state government of Navin Patnaik for failing to provide proper security for the Union minister.
"The Congress has lost credibility across the country. I suspect the eggs were hurled at the instance of the BJD," Odisha BJP leader Arun Singh said.
The state’s leader of the opposition, Narasingh Mishra of the Congress it is natural that there would be a nationwide protest against a Union minister if his party’s government in Madhya Pradesh used the police to kill agitating farmers.
He was critical of the arrest of the Youth Congress activists. “When BJD activists hurl eggs at an MP, police remain inactive," Mishra said.
Criticising the Centre for its anti-farmer policies, senior Congress leader Pradip Majhi remarked that the eggs were hurled so that Radha Mohan Singh Minister would realize the sentiments of the people.
The government chief whip in the Assembly, Amar Prasad Satpathy, however, there is no question of BJD taking the help of the Congress to stage a protest against the Union minister. "The BJD is fully capable of organising its own protest," he said.