Sitting Rajya Sabha MP Prasanna Acharya will be contesting from Bargarh Parliamentary Constituency - his old fort - as the ruling party nominee. He was the MLA from Bargarh Assembly segment in 1990 and 1995.
In 2009 election, the BJD stalwart had won from Rairakhol Assembly constituency in Sambalpur district and also represented the Sambalpur Parliamentary constituency thrice in a row from 1998. He, however, had unsuccessfully contested the 2014 election from Bijepur Assembly constituency.
Pitted against BJP’s Suresh
Pujari this time, he speaks to Phanindra Pradhan about his prospects.
How are you approaching the polls? What are your key issues?
Development is our only agenda and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik symbolises development.
I am raising various developmental works and welfare measures undertaken by the BJD-led State Government over the years.
The BJD has provided basic amenities including road connectivity and drinking water besides extending a whole range of pro-people welfare schemes to people, touching their lives in every manner.
You have been MP from Sambalpur earlier. Will Bargarh as your new constituency pose any difficulty?
I am not new to Bargarh Parliamentary Constituency. I am with the people here and they are continuously supporting me.
If elected, what steps would you take for development of the constituency?
I will give special emphasis on strengthening irrigation. Farmers of the constituency are taking benefit of the deep bore-wells dug up under the Government scheme to irrigate their land. Similarly, the proposed Gangadhar Meher Lift Canal System and Parbati Giri Mega Lift Irrigation Project will further strengthen irrigation in the constituency. While Bargarh district is known for agriculture, Jharsuguda is a hub for industries. My thrust would be on development of both agriculture and industries as both generate employment and contribute to the GDP.
What are your prospects of winning the constituency?
There is a huge support base for the BJD in the constituency. I have got good response from the voters during campaigning. I am confident of winning the constituency.