IPL chairman and former cricketer Ranjib Biswal, who has recently been elected to Rajya Sabha defeating his nearest rival Raghunath Mohapatra, says he has no interest for PCC chief post or the chief ministerial candidate. Have a chart with the former cricketer-turned politician----
Q, Your name came to the Rajya Sabha polls easily but you won the elections amid very complex situation. Do you think that Lord Jagannath made your victory easy? Your rival is saying that Jagannath did not want his victory. What is your view?
A, An easy winning does not give much pleasure unlike a victory with much difficulties. So, I got immense pleasure after overcoming all hurdles. Lord Jagannath is the leader of the world. I am just a nominal devotee. So, his decision about one’s victory and defeat is final.
Q, Prior to this election, such a united Congress was not found earlier. Sometimes cross-voting was there while sometimes votes were rejected. But this time the scene was different. Dou you think that you successfully pleased all the MLAs of your party?
A, I have been saying since beginning that I was fighting the election with the strength of 27 party MLAs. The Congress party stood behind me in the elections. MLAs are never sold in Congress party. This time they have proved that Congress is a united power. The party legislators gave a fitting reply to media speculation over cross voting and horse trading.
Q, You got 29 votes beyond your 27 party MLAs. After 27, Bhimsena Choudhury voted for you. And who is that another voter? Do you thing Bhimsen developed a soft corner for you?
A, How can I know who is that another person. I am confirmed that all 27 party MLAs have voted for me. How can you know that Bhimsen supported me? You are speculating this thing, but not confirmed. I have very strong social relationship with Bhimsen babu, but in politics he is different. As the party took the responsibility of 27 MLAs, I personally requested all the independent legislators to vote for me if they like my candidatures.
Q, You have requested Braja Pradhan and Jitu Patnaik for the same. On February 6, when both of them joined BJD at Naveen Niwas, you immediately moved to Election Commission alleging horse trading. How can it be a horse trading?
A, I complained against Braja Pradhan not against Jitu. Because Braja was one of my proposers. I do not understand that what prompted Braja Pradhan to embrace Naveen only after four days. So, I complained before EC that it was a blatant day light robbery. I have not gone against Jitu Patnaik because he was not my proposer.
Q, When Jitu and Braja joined BJD, former PCC president Niranjan Patnaik accused State Congress of holding weak leadership which failed to keep two Congress supported MLAs. Did such remark sock you?
A, No, not at all. In my life I never take any tension rather I like to pass the same to my opposite group. During my child hood I used to give tension to my mother. I do the same in field of cricket and politics too. On the remark of Niranjan Babu I would like to suggest him that being a senior most leader of the party, he should refrain from giving such statements. As he is saying about a weak leadership, then how can we got 29 votes beyond 27 party MLAs.
Q, It was seen from the Congress celebration that after your victory as if your party has got a new life. The party seems to be united. Do you want to be the next CM candidate or PCC president?
A, No, I do not have any interest for such posts. I was just acting like a Dharmapada among 1,200 sculptors of Konark. I have just given the finishing touch to the party. I am openly saying that I have no interest for becoming CM or PCC president.