Odisha BJD survives revolt

Odisha BJD survives revolt

Reports of strife medias imagination: Mohapatra

The ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) in Odisha has survived a revolt attempt with the alleged perpetrators declaring on Wednesday that there has been no move to topple Naveen Patnaik’s government nor split the party.

The declaration on Wednesday came from senior BJD leader and Rajya Sabha member Pyari Mohan Mohapatra who, the previous day, had conducted a meeting attended, according to him, by 36 party MLAs including three ministers to discuss party matters.

Mohapatra told a press conference on Wednesday that reports of a revolt were the “media’s own imagination. We had no plan to split the party or the government.” Mohapatra said “nobody has the guts to take disciplinary action against me,” when asked if he expects disciplinary action from the party for his activities.

 As soon as the news of the ‘rebellion’ broke on Tuesday evening, Naveen Patnaik’s supporters like party vice-president and state finance minister Pafulla Ghadei and another party vice-president Damodar Rout swung into action directing the party MLAs and ministers to gather at Naveen Nivas, Patnaik’s residence here. Patnaik at that time was on his way back from Rome.

On Wednesday morning, a majority of the party legislators had arrived at the venue openly extending their support for Patnaik. Interestingly, among them were some of the legislators who had attended the meeting convened by Mohapatra on Tuesday evening.

The development, in fact, provided an opportunity to some of  Patnaik’s supporters to go on the offensive. “The party and the government are absolutely safe. The game plan of some to split the party and topple the government has failed. The conspiracy hatched by them has been exposed,” said senior BJD legislator Prabhat Tripathy.

Mohapatra said “we had no plan to split the party or topple the government. Naveen Patnaik continues to be my leader. There was no revolt.”

Conspiracy charge

He said 36 party MLAs including three ministers had a meeting with him at his residence on Tuesday evening. “I had called some of these MLAs while some others had come on their own. Party matters were discussed at the meeting,” Mohapatra said. Some of them expressed unhappiness over the manner in which the regional outfit was being run, according to him.

He indicated that he himself was not happy with the manner in which the party was being managed. “The chief minister had assigned me the job of strengthening the party which I did. But now I believe that my hard labour of 12 years has gone waste,” he maintained, admitting to differences between him and Patnaik.

 “I have been advising him since long. However, now-a-days he no more takes my advice,” Mohapatra said. 

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