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Damodar Rout takes jibe at Central team over assessment of crop damage

Damodar Rout

Bhubaneswar: BJD vice-president and Agriculture Minister Damodar Rout on Sunday came down heavily on Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh for sending a central team to take stock of the pest menace in the state.

The war of words between the BJD and BJP ahead of the Sunday visit of Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Gajandra Singh Shekhawat has been ensued with the State Government slamming the Centre for interfering in State matters.

Rout said the Centre is trying to politicize the issue by prematurely sending a team for assessment of the damage without consulting the State.

He alleged that the Centre by sending a team on its own is unnecessarily meddling in the State affairs.

“In a federal structure, agriculture is a State subject. The State Government is taking all possible measures to address the problems. Since we have not finished the crop loss assessment, we have not sought any Central assistance. The State is yet to make a formal request to the Centre to send a team for assessment of the crop loss,” Rout said.

Accusing the central minister of overstepping his constitutional limits, Rout said: “This is a federal government. Everyone should remain within their limits.”

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