Paddy scam to dominate monsoon session in Chhattisgarh assembly


Raipur : The monsoon session of Chhattisgarh assembly is expected to be stormy with the main opposition Congress making it clear Monday that it would grill the government on three issues – an alleged multi-million-rupee paddy scam, rise in Maoist violence and the deteriorating law and order situation.

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“The Congress will seek reply from treasury benches in the assembly for engineering a paddy scam racket this year that runs into an estimated Rs.2,000 crore (Rs.20 billion),” state Congress general secretary Ramesh Varlyani told IANS.

He said the Congress will not allow the house to run till government orders a high-level independent probe, preferably by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The party has all documentary evidences to substantiate the charges, Varlyani added.

“The BJP government is trying to cover up the scam. A CBI probe is the best option to unravel the truth as to how the cooperative societies procured thousands of tonnes of paddy only on paper in the last procurement season (October 2008-January 2009). The societies claimed to have paid millions of rupees to farmers in exchange of paddy but actually the procurement and payment were made only on paper,” he alleged.

The Congress also accused the societies of forging papers and engineering scams showing fake names of farmers.

The paddy scam hit the state last month when a local Hindi daily published the report prominently. The issue again became alive last week when the newspaper put out another report giving details of the scam.

Besides the paddy scam, Congress will also raise issues of rising Maoist violence and deteriorating law and order situation in all the 18 districts of the state, Varlyani said.

Chhattisgarh’s monsoon session will begin July 20 and conclude July 31. This is the second session of state’s third legislative assembly.

The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has 49 legislators in a 90-member house while the Congress has 38.