Ministers' absence irks participants to no end

Ministers' absence irks participants to no end

For sandalwood:

Ministers' absence irks participants to no end

Green: Mayor Sandesh Swamy and KEA Chairman B P Manjunath plant a sandalwood sapling on the premises of Sandalwood Oil Factory in Mysore on Sunday. Additional PCCF (Development) G V Sugur, CCF B J Hosmath, Zoo Authority of Karnataka Member Secretary Jaykumar, Conservator of Forest Ravi, DCF Yatish Kumar are seen. DH PHOTO

Ongoing political crisis in the State had its impact on a workshop on sandalwood organised for farmers here on Sunday, as the two ministers earlier scheduled to participate in the programme failed to turn up.

This triggered tension for a while with the farmers demanding the organisers to postpone the programme. The host Forest Department had to eventually apologise when much efforts to pacify them didn’t yield any results.

Forest Minister C H Vijayashankar was scheduled to inaugurate the workshop on sandalwood and forest farming for farmers, crafts persons and entrepreneurs at NIE Indoor Stadium, while Medical Education and District In-charge Minister S A Ramdas was to preside over.

However, both skipped the programme as they were held up in New Delhi following the political turmoil. Karnataka State Sugar Cane Growers Association President Kurbur Shanthakumar who was also participating, was irked to learn about this and vociferously demanded that the event be cancelled.

“When the event has been convened to air grievances and sharing success stories in front of the Ministers, it would be a waste effort to do it in their absence. It will just be another event, than ministers understanding the woes”, alleged Shanthakumar.

He found support in most of the farmers present in the hall, who cared two hoots to continuous appeal made by organisers to maintain peace and continue with the schedule.

In an attempt to pacify them, the officers promised that they would apprise the higher ups about their queries and also help find solutions, but it could aid least in pacifying the ryots. Finding it difficult, the organisers tendered an apology on behalf of the absentee ministers.

It was only then the farmers relented and facilitated the inauguration of the workshop. Karnataka Exhibition Authority (KEA) Chairman B P Manjunath inaugurated the programme, while Mayor Sandesh Swamy presided.  An exhibition of crafts items from Karnataka State Handloom Development Corporation Ltd., (KSHDL) Mysore sandal soap, oil and detergents attracted many.

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