The Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu-led Congress government in the state had moved the apex court in the CPS case with high hopes, but could not get relief.
The Himachal Pradesh government has ordered a probe after a purported video of the apple farmer dumping apples in a stream in the crop belt of Rohru in Shimla district went viral on Saturday.
Horticulture and Revenue Minister Jagat Singh Negi said that he has ordered a probe to verify the authenticity of the farmer dumping crates of apples, blaming it on the failure of the state government to open the blocked road that prevented him from timely taking the apple produce to the markets for sale.
Negi while talking to media here on Monday said that the allegations of apples having been rotted due to blocked roads in view of the natural calamity were wrong and were aimed at misleading the public as there was alternative connectivity to take the produce to the markets.
Skeptical about the video, Negi alleged that it was the opposition’s handiwork to create panic amongst the farmers.
“After the incident was brought to my notice through the media, I directed SDM Rohru to investigate. His preliminary report reveals that the apples that were being disposed belonged to Up Pradhan of the area. He has, however, denied that the video was neither made by him nor made viral.”
“The apples dumped in the stream were the remnants of the apple produce which were left after the grading and had no market value. The owners chose to dispose of the apples in the stream, which was wrong as it causes pollution. Instead, action should be taken against him for polluting the river,” he claimed.
He charged BJP leader Chetan Bragta from Jubbal-Kotkhai assembly constituency for releasing the video under conspiracy and also that the Up Pradhan whose apples were dumped is associated with the BJP.
It is unfortunate that such tactics are being used at a time of crisis, he lamented.
National highways and state highways are getting closed when it rains and are being opened from time to time, said Negi, adding that PWD officials have been directed to work in double shifts to open the link roads in the rural areas.
Farmers are even volunteering to help in the restoration of the roads, but the attitude of the opposition is unfortunate as they are trying to politicize the crisis, he alleged.
“We have initiated legal action and those involved will not be spared how influential the person may be,” he warned.