BHUBANESWAR: Union Tribal Affairs Minister Jual Oram on Tuesday claimed that there is a secret understanding between the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) and opposition Congress in which BJD MP Soumya Ranjan Patnaik is acting as the bridge. “The State Government is running in PPP mode (Naveen Patnaik-Niranjan Patnaik Partnership) in which the newly elected Rajya Sabha member Soumya Ranjan, younger brother of Niaranjan, is acting as a bridge,” Oram said at a media conference here.
The Union Minister’s remark came in the wake of recent developments in Karnataka to which the BJD and the Congress reacted almost in similar way.
The way things are moving, there is a strong possibility of the two parties joining hands in the State ahead of the 2019 elections just to keep the BJP out of power, he said. Accusing the Congress of extending assistance to the BJD when it needed the most, Oram said the opposition party had bailed out the Naveen Patnaik Government in 2009 when the BJP pulled out of the coalition government.
The Union Minister further alleged that the Congress helped the BJD win the Bijepur by-election in a huge margin by transferring its vote to the ruling party candidate.Induction of Soumya Ranjan into BJD and sending him to Rajya Sabha is a well thought strategy as he will act as a link between the Congress and the ruling party. The two parties are working on a common plan with one aim of defeating the BJP, Oram said.
Asserting that BJP will defeat their evil design, Oram said the people of the State will give an overwhelming mandate to the BJP because of the development initiatives taken by the Central Government in the State.
Countering Oram’s allegations, the OPPC chief said the tacit understanding between BJD and BJP is evident from the fact that Naveen Patnaik is not attending Karnataka CM’s oath taking ceremony while CMs of all non-BJP States are attending the event.In response to Oram, BJD spokesperson Sasmit Patra said, “BJP is in a state of shock after Karnataka verdict and Oram’s remarks are its ‘after effects’.”
He said the BJP is searching for ways to save its skin from the fear of defeat in 2019. The Chief Minister has clarified that the BJD will keep equi-distance from BJP and Congress.On the other hand, Soumya Ranjan advised Oram not to make such baseless allegations. “Those who live in glass house should not throw stones at others,” he said and reminded the Union Minister about his stay in the BJP.