A day after faction fight, BJD suspends zilla parishad member of Digapahandi
Supporters of Pradhan claimed that their candidate would have won the by-election as they had the majority.
BHUBANESWAR/BERHAMPUR: Chief Minister and BJD president Naveen Patnaik on Friday expelled Bipin Chandra Pradhan, a zilla parishad (ZP) member from Digapahandi in Ganjam district, for anti-party activities. The suspension came after two factions of the BJD in Digapahandi, one led by Pradhan and the other by Biplab Patra, son of former speaker and local MLA Surjya Narayan Patro fought outside the block office and tried to enter it after the bypoll to panchayat samiti chairperson post was cancelled.
Both Pradhan, a close aide of Patro, and Biplab are eyeing the BJD ticket from Digapahandi Assembly seat as the former speaker is unlikely to contest the next elections as he is not keeping well. It is believed the faction that wins the block chairperson post is likely to get the ticket from the ruling party.
Pradhan, however, refuted the charge against him of indulging in anti-party activities. Admitting that he has differences with Biplab, the suspended leader said since the entry of the MLA’s son into active politics in Digapahandi, he has been sidelined in the party.
“I don’t know the reason why action was taken against me. No show cause has been issued to me by the party. However, I am a staunch follower of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and loyal BJD worker since more than three decades,” he added.
Supporters of Pradhan claimed that their candidate would have won the by-election as they had the majority. Rajya Sabha MP Manas Ranjan Mangaraj, who is BJD’s observer for Ganjam district, said the election was postponed as there was a possibility of a law and order situation. He said the bypoll will be held after the situation improves.