DHENKANAL: The political climate has heated up in Dhenkanal with candidates making all-out efforts to woo voters ahead of the by-election to zone-3 of zilla parishad in Parjang block.
The bypoll, necessitated by the demise of zilla parishad member Ranjan Panda of BJP due to Covid-19, is scheduled to be held on February 11. Zone-3, which comprises eight panchayats, has over 37,862 voters including 18,117 women.
While BJD has fielded Mamata Pany, Prasant Biswal and Himansu Panda are contesting for BJP and Congress respectively. Since the BJP and Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan enjoy considerable influence in the block, ruling BJD is not taking any chances.
Besides, several BJD leaders had joined BJP in the presence of Pradhan last month.
In a bid to win the BJP fortress, the ruling party’s Dhenkanal observer Bijay Nayak and Parjang MLA Nrusingh Sahoo are camping in several panchayats along with Mamata.
Senior party leaders are highlighting the welfare schemes of the State government by organising meetings in villages.
This apart, separate meetings are being conducted for youths and women.
The saffron party too is leaving nothing to chance and organising padayatras and door-to-door meetings in several villages. Former Rajya Sabha member Rudra Narayan Pany and Pradhan’s brother, an ex-district president of BJP, Bibhuti Bhusan are trying to win the voters by highlighting the Central government’s welfare schemes.
While Nayak said BJD will win the seat, Bibhuti opined that his party will emerge victorious as it has a strong base in the block.