BHUBANESWAR: As procurement of paddy is yet to be started in many areas despite claims by the State Government, the Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) has decided to organise a farmers’ meet on Monday at Bargarh to expose the neglect of the agriculture sector during the last 14 years.
The party has also convened a ‘chasi panchayat’ on Tuesday at Khedapali in the district, where a farmer committed suicide recently, to discuss the problems faced by farmers and chart out agitation programme against the State Government. Besides discussing the problems faced by the farmers at the panchayat, the party will also launch membership drive from Samlaipadar in the district, OPCC president Prasad Harichandan said.
Senior leaders, including former chief minister Hemananda Biswal, former Union minister Bhakta Charan Das, former MPs, MLAs and senior leaders from the area will address the farmers’ meet, he added.
Besides, the party has also convened a three-day meet of senior leaders at Jeypore from January 27 to chalk out the next course of action for reviving Congress in the tribal dominated Southern Odisha.
Though Southern districts were considered to be strong base of the Congress, the party’s performance in the area in 2014 election was disappointing. Senior leaders from Nabarangpur, Koraput, Malkangiri and Rayagada will attend the brainstorming session to analyse the reasons behind the defeat in the party’s traditional stronghold and find ways to regain the confidence of tribals.
The OPCC president said issues relating to agriculture, farmers and membership drive will top the agenda at the meeting. Senior leaders of the area, including former chief minister Giridhar Gamang and former MP Pradip Majhi, besides general secretary of the All-India Congress Committee (AICC) B K Hariprasad and secretary Subhonkar Sarkar will attend. He said two more brainstorming sessions in Western Odisha and Northern Odisha will be held soon.