I became CM, thanks to Biju Patnaik, says Deve Gowda

I became CM, thanks to Biju  Patnaik, says Deve Gowda
Former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda on Friday said it was because of former Odisha chief minister the late Biju Patnaik that he could become the chief minister of Karnataka in 1994.

He was speaking at the centenary celebrations of Biju Patnaik organised by All-Odisha Association of Bengaluru at the Palace Grounds. The programme was attended by Biju Patnaik’s son and the present Chief Minister of Odisha, Naveen Patnaik.

Gowda recalled that Biju had been sent as an observer by undivided Janata Dal to decide on the chief minister of Karnataka after the people voted the party to power. “Biju dada who visited Bengaluru took the opinion of the party leaders and recommended my name to the post of chief minister,” Gowda said.

The centenary celebration was well attended by Odias settled in Bengaluru and every seat in the vast Gayathri Vihar premises was occupied. It is estimated that as many as six lakh Odias live in Bengaluru. Gowda said Biju Patnaik was one of the tallest leaders of the country and his contribution to Odisha and the nation was unmatched.

Naveen Patnaik said his father was a down-to-earth leader who loved to spend time with the poorest of the poor and share his feelings. At the same time he had a global vision for Odisha. Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who was in New Delhi, had deputed Minister Basavaraj Rayareddy to event.
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