Odisha CM holds roadshow in Bhubaneswar after BJP, Congress chief criticise him

When BJP would come to power, the party would make sure that a man from Odisha becomes the next CM, says BJP president J. P. Nadda

Published - May 17, 2024 03:11 am IST - BHUBANESWAR

Biju Janata Dal president and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik greets the gathering during an election campaign for the Lok Sabha and Odisha Assembly elections in Deogarh on Wednesday.

Biju Janata Dal president and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik greets the gathering during an election campaign for the Lok Sabha and Odisha Assembly elections in Deogarh on Wednesday. | Photo Credit: ANI

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik held a roadshow here after Bharatiya Janata Party president J. P. Nadda and Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge came down heavily on the veteran politician for alleged “misgovernance” in the State.

In a specially-designed bus, Mr. Patnaik, flanked by his close aide V. K. Pandian, canvassed for the Biju Janata Dal in a roadshow in the evening as BJD supporters had congregated on both sides of the main thoroughfare of the city to greet him.

Earlier in the morning, Mr. Nadda also chose the roadshow route to intensify BJP’s mass outreach in Bhubaneswar. Later, the BJP president flew down to the western Odisha districts of Bargarh and Sundargarh to address public meetings.

“People of Odisha had chosen Mr. Patnaik to rule the State. But he handed over the State to bureaucrats. Members of Parliament and Members of Legislative Assembly are forced to sit among audience while bureaucrats sit besides Odisha CM on stage,” the BJP leader said.

“When the BJP would come to power, the party would make sure a man from Odisha having connect with people would become next CM, not outsiders.” Mr. Nadda said in an apparent reference to Mr. Pandian, the Tamil Nadu-born IAS officer who has since taken voluntary retirement from civil service to plunge into politics.

Similarly, Mr. Kharge said Odisha, which is an important State, was destroyed by both the BJP and BJD. There has been no development in Odisha despite Mr. Patnaik ruling the State in an uninterrupted manner for 25 years, he said.

The Congress chief said as per the International Labour Organisation (ILO) report, Odisha possesses rich mineral resources but has a high unemployment rate of 41%.

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