In the fight between BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik and rebel leader Pyarimohan Mohapatra, round one has gone in favour of the former as the State Executive of the regional party resolved to expel the Rajya Sabha MP along with his close aide Jagneswar Babu. The State Executive also asked Mohapatra to resign from his Rajya Sabha seat.
Mohapatra who had launched the Odisha Jana Morcha (OJM), a platform inside the BJD, ostensibly to bring internal democracy to the party warned that the anti-Naveen campaign will be intensified in the coming days and the fight will go on. Mohapatra said that he will go to the workers over the issue of his expulsion from the party. The party president and state executive are products of 27 lakh BJD workers, he said and added that he will go to them.
"Where was the State Executive for the last two years and 10 months?" Mohapatra asked and said that it has been convened only one-and-a-half months of its tenure is left.
The main charges against Mohapatra were that he was spreading canards against the party president, the BJD and other leaders in the party since May 29 by forming the OJM later. “The state executive, therefore, decided to expel him from the primary membership of the BJD,” Revenue and Disaster Management Minister Surjya Narayan Patro said.
Patro alleged that Mohapatra is also collecting donation in the name of OJM which violates the BJD constitution. The State Executive ratified the decision of the party president to suspend Mohapatra after the May 29 incident. Alleging that Mohapatra indulged in gross anti-party activities by speaking against party President Naveen Patnaik at different public meetings, Kalpataru Das, another senior BJD leader and parliamentary affairs minister, said that there is also no provision in the party constitution to form a parallel organisation without the approval of the president.
The State Executive, however, took no decision on two party MLAs Prabhat Biswal and Bibhuti Bhusan Balabantray who were suspended for allegedly colluding with Mohapatra to dethrone the chief minister on May 29. “The State Executive has not taken any decision on the two MLAs as it is of the view that they have not committed any antiparty activities since that day,” Das said.
Mohapatra, however, raised questions over the validity of the State Executive meeting where the resolution was passed to expel him. He also rejected the demand for his resignation from Rajya Sabha. “Why should I resign when the State Executive meeting where the decision was taken to expel me is not valid?” he said.
On the other hand he announced that the fight against Naveen would be intensified in the coming days. “The fight of the Biju karmis (workers) against Naveen noukars (servants) will be intensified in the coming days," he said.
- Sunday Standard