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Naveen responds to party MP's remarks




 Chief Minister and BJD president Naveen Patnaik today said that his removing ministers and giving them important party positions in ruling BJD should not be construed otherwise.

Patnaik's statement came a day after senior party MP Tathagat Satpathy reportedly remarked yesterday on the removal of four ministers and assigning them party work.

Satpathy had during his meeting in Dhenkanal constituency also said that BJD leaders were "not above suspicion" and that is why the chief minister had kept "some of them out of the ministry."

The remark did not go down well among certain BJD leaders, including former industries minister Debi Prasad Mishra who met Patnaik today and expressed his displeasure over his name being mentioned in public.

Patnaik disapproved of Satpathy's public statement and said an explanation will be sought from him.

“Me and Satpathy have never crossed each other’s boundary. But his remark about me has come without any context. I am hurt," Mishra, who was one of the ministers, who was dropped, told reporters.

Satpathy's office in a series of twitter posts said "Him dropping ministers from state cabinet clear indication. My constituents accept, appreciate and support stand of CM Naveen Patnaik."

"Naveen is a clean leader. Doesn't tolerate anti-people acts even within BJD," office of T Satpathy tweeted.

The Chief Minister and BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik meanwhile is understood to have sought an explanation from Party MP Tathagat Satapathy for his unpalatable remark on several former ministers and senior party leaders at a public meeting yesterday.

Naveen termed Satpathy’s statement as ‘wrong’ and sought an explanation from him.

The BJD supremo said, “What he has said on party leaders is not right. He will be asked to explain his statement. Those who have quit the State Cabinet, have been given important party responsibility.”

The CM’s reaction came after former minister and party vice-president Debi Mishra met him at the Secretariat and apprised him of the incident.

Satpathy had also termed several leaders of the Congress and BJP as corrupt and ‘Thieves.’

Party spokesman Sameer Ranjan Das said that Supremo Patnaik has taken matter seriously.

“What circumstances led him to give such statement will be examined. Chief Minister has given important party responsibility to those who were criticised by him,” party spokesperson Sameer Dash said.

Meanwhile, Opposition BJP targeted Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and said he should clarify who the thieves.

“The CM should also let people know what these people have stolen,” said party vice president Sameer Mohanty.

Notably, at least three senior BJD MPs – Bhartruhari Mahtab, Baijayant Panda and Tathagat Satapathy – have created embarrassment for the party in the past few months, especially after the rural polls, through their articles, utterances in public or posts in social media sites.

Bhartruhari was asked to explain by Party supremo after an article he wrote in the daily newspaper he edits on ‘fissures’ in the  party and its preparedness to counter the onslaught of the rampaging BJP in State.

However, it is not know whether Mahtab replied to that show cause notice though he had met Patnaik soon after getting the letter.

Similarly Baijayant Panda was stripped off the Parliamentary Party spokesman post following some of his articles on party affairs and posts in social media.

Only recently, Satapathy was stopped mid-way through his address at a party function to mark the three years of BJD government in the fourth term by Mishra.

Satapathy cut short his speech abruptly after Mishra whispered something to him as the MP was about to discuss the differences of opinion among party leaders which he felt leveraged the saffron party to rattle the ruling BJD.






Editorial

Précis 2017
From asking his party men to ‘live a simple life and serve the people’ to taunting the BJP for its ‘crocodile tears’, Chief Minister and BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik has not only become politically invincible, he seems to be so in the coming years too.

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