BHUBANESWAR: The president of the Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) Niranjan Patnaik continued to be the target of dissidents with Congress whip in the Assembly Tara Prasad Bahinipati on Thursday demanding change of leadership and making a sitting MLA the head of the State unit.
Bahinipati told mediapersons that a legislator should be made the president of the party to strengthen the organisation. He said that he will raise the issue with the Odisha in-charge during his next visit to the State. If a MLA is made the OPCC president, all leaders and party workers will abide by his decisions, he added.
Reiterating his demand for the removal of Patnaik from the post, Bahinipati said he will have no problem if senior leader and MLA Suresh Kumar Routray, Barabati-Cuttack MLA Mohammed Moquim or any other person is made OPCC president. “But whosoever is chosen, he should be from among the elected MLAs,” he added.
Out of the nine MLAs of the Congress in the Assembly, five have already demanded the resignation of Patnaik. However, leader of the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) Narasingha Mishra is yet to take any side on the issue so far.
Bahinipati said that organisational base of the party is shrinking over the years and urgent action is necessary for its revival.Stating that officers are not paying enough importance to any Congress leader at the State and district level, Bahinipati said that it has become very difficult to work for the people being part of the party.