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Opposition slams Naveen’s clarion call for regional parties to join hands




 Even as the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) celebrated its 20th Foundation Day in Puri, Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Congress slammed Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik for his clarion call to all regional parties to come together for strengthening co-operative federalism.

Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas and senior BJP leader Dharmendra Pradhan said, “Best wishes to Shri Naveen Patnaik. May there be alliance with West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee who are entangled equally in the multi-crore chit fund scam. She is the same Mamata Banerjeeji who had hesitated to supply potato and onion to Odisha at the time of dire need. Despite her apathetic attitude towards the poor people of Odisha then, let him (Naveen Babu) clinch a political understanding with her. Even when Odisha and West Bengal tangled over Rasagolla GI tag issue, Naveen Babu is eager to have a nexus with Mamataji. Good wishes to him”

Pradhan stated that it is obvious that all the accused in the multi-crore chit fund scam will come together. He said BJD’s proposed alliance with Lalu Prasad Yadav’s Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) is evidence of like-minded parties coming together for electoral gains.  The saffron party leader warned, “The people of Odisha this time will give a fitting reply to Naveen Babu”.

Congress’ senior leader Sarat Rout said Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is an opportunist and his strategy changes as per requirement. Rout said Patnaik’s call for regional parties to unite to strengthen co-operative federalism is aimed at playing it safe ahead of the 2019 polls.

Although Patnaik has maintained that his party will maintain equal distance from both BJP and Congress, he has not been vocal about a tie-up with other regional parties in the country. However, BJD’s Cuttack MP Bhatruhari Mahtab today said Odisha’s neighbours West Bengal and Telangana are being governed by regional parties and an alliance with such parties cannot be ruled out in future.

Notably on the eve of the BJD’s 20th Foundation Day, BJD’s Supremo Naveen Patnaik on Monday had said, "It is important to have co-ordination among regional parties for strengthening cooperative federalism”.






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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