SAMBALPUR: Health Minister Prasanna Acharya rushing back to Bhubaneswar leaving behind campaigning in his Assembly segment of Rairakhol on Thursday noon has added grist to the rumour mills about his possible exit.
Acharya left the district even as BJD strategist Pyarimohan Mohapatra was busy canvassing. Acharya could not be reached for comment.
Meanwhile, though Excise Minister AU Singhdeo resigned on Thursday owning moral responsibility for the killer brew deaths, Acharya finds himself in a sticky situation as police and Excise officials claimed that it’s medicinal concoction and not hooch which led to the tragedy.
Pyari, who campaigned at four places in the district on Thursday, feigned ignorance about any resignation plan by Acharya. He, however, welcomed the move by Singhdeo. Saying that Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had already announced a judicial inquiry into the tragedy, Pyari declined further comment.
Analysts say the issue will definitely reflect on the popularity and vote share of the BJD in the elections. Moreover, with two hooch deaths in Sonepur district still fresh in memory of locals, the latest development may upset BJD’s calculations.