BJP is sinking quite fast, Naveen Patnaik says reacting to party's defeat in UP, Bihar bypolls

The chief of the Biju Janata Dal (BJD), which was in alliance with the BJP till 2009, added that he had not thought about aligning with any front.

Published: 15th March 2018 06:42 PM  |   Last Updated: 15th March 2018 09:16 PM   |  A+A-

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik (File | PTI)

By Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR: Elated over the defeat of BJP in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar by-polls, chief minister and BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik today said that the saffron outfit is sinking quite fast.

''We can see the BJP is sinking ... It is sinking quite fast,'' Naveen told mediapersons in response to questions on the saffron party's performance in the by-polls in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. The chief minister also did not rule out the possibility of the BJD joining any anti-BJP alliance in future. “We have not thought of any alliance for the time being. There are no such thoughts,” he said.

The BJD now follows the policy of maintaining equal distance from the BJP and Congress. The BJD and BJP combine ruled the state for about nine years from 2000-2009. The alliance broke ahead of the 2009
general election over a dispute on seat distribution for the assembly and Lok Sabha polls. Naveen had then described BJP as "communal" and the Congress as "corrupt".

Several BJD leaders point towards similarities between the by-poll results in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar where the BJP suffered reverses and the by-election to the Bijepur assembly constituency in Odisha
which the regional outfit won by a record margin of 41,933 votes.

The BJP lost to the Samajwadi Party in the Lok Sabha by-elections in Gorakhpur, a seat vacated by Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath and in Phulpur, the seat vacated by deputy chief minister Keshav Prasad Maurya. In Bihar also Lalu Prasad Yadav's  RJD won the Araria Lok Sabha seat and Jehanabad Assembly seat, leaving the BJP with the Bhabhua Assembly seat.  BJD state secretary Bijay Nayak said that people have started rejecting the BJP for its arrogance and non-fulfilment of poll promises.

The chief minister also ruled out the possibility of a ministry expansion now. Besides, he said law will take its own course in the arrest of former minister and BJP leader Jaynarayan Mishra in connection with the attack on brother of minister of state for energy Sushant Singh and four other BJD leaders during the
by-poll to Bijepur assembly constituency. The driver of the vehicle had died while he was being shifted to the SCB Medical College and Hospital, Cuttack.


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