BHUBANESWAR: As electioneering gathers pace, BJP candidate from Balikuda-Erasama Assembly constituency Damodar Rout finds himself in a dilemma as affection for son Sambit Routray seems to have taken precedence over his loyalty towards the party.
Everything was going well for the senior leader till Chief Minister and BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik announced Sambit as the party’s candidate from Paradip Assembly constituency. Rout is the sitting MLA from Paradip and also has his support base in the entire Jagatsinghpur district.
Prior to BJD fielding his son from Paradip, Rout had announced that he will work to defeat the candidates of the regional outfit in all Assembly constituencies of Jagatsinghpur district. Now, political observers are waiting for his next move. But the question still remains: Will Rout campaign for the BJP candidate in Paradip or skip the constituency?
Though a direct fight between father and son from Paradip has been averted, the issue will have a far reaching impact in all Assembly constituencies of the district. There was an impression that Rout will contest the Assembly elections from Paradip constituency. However, the veteran leader changed his decision after joining BJP and announced that he will contest for a last time from Balikuda-Erasama seat.
Rout is, however, yet to make his stand clear publicly and is busy campaigning in his Assembly constituency. The issue has also divided Rout’s family. One one side are Rout and his daughter Preetinanda, who have resigned from BJD, and on another is Sambit, a candidate from the regional outfit.
Meanwhile, Preetinanda has filed nomination as an Independent candidate from Bhubaneswar-North Assembly constituency.