For the first time in its history, the ruling outfit of Odisha, the Biju Janata Dal (BJD), will fight the upcoming polls alone.
The party saw the light of the day in 1997 and since then it had alliance and seat adjustments for the Assembly and Lok Sabha polls with various parties. They include the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Communist Party of India (CPI), Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPM) and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP).
Immediately after its birth, the regional outfit, which is yet to face electoral defeat, tied up with the BJP and the parties successfully fought three Lok Sabha elections–1998, 1999 and 2004–as well as two Assembly polls–2000 and 2004.
However, on the eve of the 2009 Assembly and Lok Sabha elections, the BJD snapped its more than a decade long friendship with the BJP and entered into a new alliance with the CPI, CPM and NCP.
Its relationship with the NCP went sour nearly two years ago after all four party MLAs switched sides and joined the BJD.
The regional outfit’s alliance with the CPI and CPM had remained intact till just a few days ago when the two Left parties announced to fight the coming polls separately after waiting for days for a call from Naveen Patnaik for seat sharing talks.
The BJD has not yet made public as to why it cold shouldered its electoral partners of five years.
For the coming twin polls, too, the regional outfit would have gone for a tie-up with the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM), but for the latter’s central leadership.
In fact, the JMM’s state unit and BJD had already made a joint statement a few days back announcing a tie-up.
JMM state president Sudam Marandi and his followers resigned from the party revolting against the central leadership and joined the BJD.