BJD set to sweep assembly elections in Odisha

BJD set to sweep assembly elections in Odisha

The Naveen Patnaik-led Biju Janata Dal (BJD) is all set to sweep the assembly elections in Odisha and form the government for the fourth consecutive term. Elections to the state assembly were held simultaneously in Odisha with the Lok Sabha elections.  

The regional outfit has already won 83 out of 147 assembly seats besides leading in 33 other constituencies at the time of writing. The party needed 74 sets to form the government on its own. The BJD had captured 103 seats during the 2009 assembly elections.

The principal opposition party in the state, Congress, has won nine assembly seats and is leading in six other constituencies. The party won 27 assembly seats in the 2009 elections. Similarly, the BJP which won only 6 assembly seats in 2009 has won two seats this time, besides leading in ten others.

Prominent BJD winners include party president and chief minister Naveen Patnaik who has retained his Hinjili assembly constituency in southern Odisha Ganjam district defeating his Congress rival Sibaram Patra by a margin of more than 60,000 votes.

Several members of his cabinet have already won their respective seats. They include Surya Narayan Patra (Digapahandi), Damodar Rout (Paradip), Bijoyshree Routray (Basudevpur) and deputy speaker of the outgoing assembly Sananda Marandi (Baripada). However, senior BJD leader and state finance minister Prasana Acharya was trailing in Bijupur constituency in western Odisha’s Bargarh district.

Important Congress winners include former MLA Chiranjeeb Biswal (Jagatsinghpur). PCC president Jayadev Jena has lost the Anandapur assembly seat in Koenjhar district, a major setback. Similarly, a prominent BJP loser is former minister Jayanarayan Mishra (Sambalpur) who had won the 2009 elections defying the pro-BJD wave.

Chief Minister Patnaik has thanked the people of the state for reposing faith on him and his party. “The election results have clearly proved that the people in the state have faith in the BJD which has been providing a clean and good administration for the last fourteen years. This is not BJD’s victory but the victory of all the people in Odisha,” a visibly delighted Patnaik told reporters.

He congratulated Narendra Modi on his victory in the Lok Sabha elections and promised that his party would co-operate with the new government at the Centre. “Our approach to the new government at the Centre will be positive and we hope there will be a similar positive attitude from them towards Odisha,” he said.

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