Jagatsinghpur May 13 (LocalWire): Jagatsinghpur district was rocked by cyclone victims’ protests, police lathicharge and road blockades today.
Hundreds of cyclone-affected people of Biritola panchayat under Tirtol block squatted in front of the Collector’s office protesting non-supply of PDS commodities and sale of kerosene at a higher rate.
In Biridi, several people were injured when police resorted to lathicharge the crowd during disbursement of relief.
Irate people also blocked Cuttack-Naugaon National Highway for non-restoration of power supply to to cyclone hit villages.
Since several kutcha houses were severely damaged, polythene was being distributed to the affected people at tehsil office, Biridi.
People began shouting slogans and demonstrating as there was discrepancy and because everyone didn’t get the relief material.
The tahsildar of Biridi, Sagarika Priyadarshani Mallick, sought police intervention to tackle the situation.
Police rushed to the spot and resorted to lathicharge to disperse the agitated crowd.
Several people were injured and one person who was seriously injured had to be shifted to SCB Medical College and Hospital, Cuttack for treatment. Later, distribution of polythene continued in police presence.
People complained that there was irregularity in distribution of PDS commodities like rice, wheat and kerosene and villagers of Biritola panchayat demonstrated and sat on mass dharna raising slogans against PDS dealer who had threatened the consumers.
Ward member Sarat Chandra Das alleged that the PDS dealer has closed his shop and people returned empty handed.
Government supplied 2.50 litres kerosene per card while the dealer gave only 2 litres.
The dealer has been selling kerosene at the rate of Rs 36 instead of Rs 34 also.
District civil supply Officer Dillip Kumar Patra pacified the agitators and assured to take stern action against the PDS dealer.
After he promised that distribution of PDS commodities will be streamlined the irate people called off their stir.
Hundreds of people blocked the Cuttack-Naugaon National Highway at Tarikunda for non-supply of electric connection to cyclone-hit villages paralyzing traffic for three hours.
Local police led by SDPO, Jagatsinghpur, Prakash Pal, rushed to the spot and pacified the people to call off their stir.