Bhubaneswar : For the parties and candidates in the fray, the plight of farmers remains firmly etched on their lips as campaigning for the Patkura assembly by-poll is picking up steam in Odisha’s Kendrapara district.
Issues related to farmers were the principal poll planks in the recently-concluded twin elections in Odisha.
The farmers’ plight in this predominantly rural constituency has again come to the forefront with erratic monsoon rain playing spoilsport in Khariff paddy cultivation. The agrarian activities solely regulate economy of the Garadpur, Marshaghai and Derabish blocks which are coming under Patkura assembly constituency. Deficient rainfall has adversely affected the Khariff crops in the region with hundreds of acres rain-fed khariff fields wearing blank look with no signs sowing of paddy crops.
For the voters eking out a living on farming operation, the by-poll and its political ramification has been relegated to the rear.
“We pray for rain god to be kind to us. A large number of khariff cultivators are yet begin the sowing operation. Politicians are knocking at our doors to promise moon for us. Our village is located at the tail-end of canal irrigation network. Canal water eludes our agriculture fields. We are entirely dependent on monsoon rain for agriculture operation. We are least bothered about the polls and its outcome”, said a farmer Arjun Mallick from Dhola village under Derabish block.
The issues for the upcoming polls scheduled on April 23 and April 29 has again been farmers-centric. The parties are leaving no stones unturned in wooing the voters thriving on farming activities
In each of the poll rallies, the ruling BJD is found dwelling on his government’s flagship ‘Kalia’ direct cash transfer scheme to woo the peasants. Kalia and farmers’ issues have remained the principal focus area of BJD’s campaign so far.
BJP strives to woo farmers by raising the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi scheme.
The congress on the other hand describes the principal political opponents as anti-farmer to seek votes in favour of the party.