Anandapur: Hundreds of farmers staged a blockade on NH-53 here in Keonjhar district Tuesday protesting against pent attack on paddy and jute crops.
Acres of farmland in Dadhibamanpur, Akarua, Ambagadia, Tartara, Balakati and Hatadihi were affected by pests.
The upset farmers squatted on the highway, disrupting traffic for three hours. “The crops are almost on the verge of ruining. But, the agriculture department is in slumber. About 15 days ago, we had apprised some agriculture officials of the growing pest menace, but nothing was done to address our concern. We had no way but to stage agitation,” the protesting farmers said.
Police forces were deployed on the spot to prevent an untoward incident.
Anandapur sub-divisional police officer Maheswar Sethi and additional tehsildar Dibakar Majhi convinced the agitating farmers and assured them of solving their problems soon.