'Sambit Patra made Puri famous': Odisha BJP leader Lekhashree Samantasinghar draws political ire
Samantasinghar said that people of other parts of the country came to know about Puri being in Odisha only after party leader Sambit Patra contested the 2019 Lok Sabha election from the seat.
BHUBANESWAR: The statement of State BJP spokesperson and general secretary Lekhashree Samantasinghar that people of other parts of the country came to know about Puri being in Odisha only after party leader Sambit Patra contested the 2019 Lok Sabha election from the seat has come in for strong criticism from BJD as well as Congress.
Samantasinghar's controversial statement came while she was addressing the party workers here at a function. BJD Rajya Sabha MP Amar Patnaik hit out at her for such a statement. "First, Odisha is like Pakistan and now this gem! It is an insult to Odisha and the land of Jagannath, the Lord of the Universe. Even a 3-year-old child knows where Puri is, the humble abode of Lord Jagannath. Make no mistake, He is the lord of Kolkata as well," Patnaik tweeted.
ଓଡିଶାର ଲୋକମାନେ @BJP4Odisha କୁ ପ୍ରତ୍ୟାଖ୍ୟାନକରିଥିବାରୁ ତୁମେ ଓଡ଼ିଶା ବାସୀଙ୍କୁ ଅପମାନ କରିବାକୁ ଚାହୁଁଛ! କିନ୍ତୁ ସମସ୍ତେ ଜାଣନ୍ତି "ମୋ ଜଗନ୍ନାଥ ମୋ ଓଡିଶାରେ ଅଛନ୍ତି” ଓ ଜଗା ସବୁବେଳେ ଓଡ଼ିଶାର ଲୋକଙ୍କ ସାଙ୍ଗରେ ଅଛନ୍ତି। (3/3)— Dr. Amar Patnaik (@Amar4Odisha) November 17, 2020
The Rajya Sabha member stated that just because people of Odisha have rejected BJP, they want to insult them."But the fact remains that 'Mo Jagannath is in Mo Odisha' and Jaga is with the people of Odisha," he said.
Puri MP Pinaki Mishra, who defeated Sambit Patra in the Lok Sabha elections, said that Puri and the Lord’s abode has been the pride of Odisha from time immemorial and will remain so long after the arrogance of some is swept away into the Bay of Bengal.
Strongly criticising Samantsinghar for her statement, BJD Khandapara MLA Soumya Ranjan Patnaik said, "In my experience, whenever people outside the State used to ask me where Odisha is, I used to tell them about Puri and people would easily understand and recognise."
He advised her to refrain from giving such statements. Senior Congress leader Suresh Routray said that Lord Jagannath should not be compared with any human being.
However, Samantsinghar maintained that her statement has been taken out of context. "My focus was on how the State government is not showing any interest in implementing 'vocal for local', the message of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. They are now quoting me out of context," she said.