Puri: Hitting out at the Opposition for criticising the much-vaunted KALIA scheme, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Friday said, “No one can stop KALIA Yatra.”
Launching the distribution of financial benefits under the Krushak Assistance for Livelihood and Income Augmentation (KALIA) scheme at Rahangia near Malatipatpur in Puri, Naveen said, “I have released funds for 12 lakh farmers in the State. With the blessings of Lord Jagannath, I start the KALIA yatra from Puri today and no one can stop it.”
The Chief Minister said this referring to the Opposition’s objection to diverting the state’s Contingency Fund for implementing the KALIA scheme.
“KALIA scheme will prove to be a milestone in Odisha’s economy. It will help farmers to enhance their agricultural activities as well as improve their livelihood. KALIA will the show path to the entire nation,” he said.
“You are providing food to the entire State. The grains and vegetables you produce are being used in Lord Jagannath’s ‘Mahaprasad’. It is a great deed, a noble deed. That’s the reason why I chose to name the scheme KALIA,” the Chief Minister told nearly an estimated one lakh farmers who had gathered at the meeting.
The Chief Minister announced that farmers will get their entitlement under KALIA scheme twice in a year – once on Akshaya Tritiya for the Kharif season and again on Nuakhai for the Rabi season.
“This scheme will help you in your farming activities and both you and your family will progress. This scheme will benefit 92 per cent farmers in the State. This program will pave the path for the entire nation as it is being appreciated by all across the country,” he added.
In the first phase, the assured assistance is being given to 12.45 lakh beneficiaries via DBT (Direct Benefit Transfer). Other benefits will be provided at a later stage.
Under the scheme, the state government will provide interest free crop loan up to Rs 50,000, financial assistance to disabled farmers and the family members of deceased farmers.
Naveen launched the scheme by giving away Rs 5,000 assistance to 10 framers for the Rabi crop season. Four framers –Prasanna Kumar Patel (Deogarh), Tapan Kumar Panda (Koraput), Sanjeet Kumar Mohanty (Mayurbhanj) and Bandharba Parida (Puri) were State guests on the occasion and shared dais with the CM.