Bolangir: Demand for revival of Bijayananda Cooperative Sugar Mill at Deogaon in this district has gained momentum with former office bearers of the sugar mill and leaders from various walks of life pitching in for its revival, a report said.
At a seminar held at Jadav Bhawan for revival of the sugar mill, Saturday, various speakers alleged that the Bijayananda sugar mill at Deogaon was the only agriculture-based industry in the state and it was closed down deliberately.
The closure of the mill has deprived hundreds of farmers from earning their livelihood in five districts of the state. They demanded that the government should immediately make the sugar mill functional for the benefit of the farmers.
Speaking on the occasion, Jagneswar Babu, former chairman of Odisha State Cooperative Bank and former president of the sugar mill, presented various details on the sugar mill. He said that the sugar mill is still in a functional state even after its closure. He alleged that the sugar mill was closed down when it was in running condition and functioning properly.
The sugar mill is lying closed since 2014. It had an outstanding amount of Rs 97 crore as loan, out of which Rs 70 crore has been paid. The rest of the loan amount could have been paid in the subsequent years. However, the sugar mill was closed down abruptly.
The matter is now sub-judice in the court for which the state government and lending bank should sit together and find a solution on revival of the sugar mill, Bipin Kushulia, chairman of Odisha Krushi Bhittika Silpa Andolan, informed the audience.
Vice-chairman Dwija Dalapati spoke on the present status of the sugar mill, secretary Rajesh Bagarti, state secretaries Kapil Kumbhar and Kumari Bhoi, treasurer Jagannath Moharana and other guests also spoke on the occasion. Several farmer leaders and the local intelligentsia also attended the seminar.