Ramakanta Biswas

The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) on Thursday expelled two party leaders- Khandapada MLA Soumya Ranjan Patnaik and Remuna MLA Sudhanshu Sekhar Parida-from the party.

BJD president and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik announced the expulsion of the two legislators from the party.

"Two MLAs have been expelled from the Biju Janata Dal. The first is Sudhanshu Parida, MLA Remuna, and the second is Soumya Ranjan Patnaik," the CM said.

Both the MLAs have been expelled for their alleged anti-people activities.

The BJD released an official statement in this regard. "Sri Sudhansu Sekhar Panda, when he was Managing Partner of M/s Nigamananda Associates, Balasore, in connivance with others misappropriated government subsidy, meant for farmers, of more than Rs.3 crores during the period from 2017-18 to 2019-20. This matter is being inquired into by the State Vigilance on the orders of the Honorable Lokayukta," the statement read.

Similarly, on the MLA Khandapada, the BJD said, "On an FIR by an ex-employee of Sambad Newspaper a case under sections 506/467/468/471/420/120-B IPC has been registered against him and others by Economic Offence Wing (EOW) Odisha. Further many ex-employees of Sambad newspaper have made similar allegations with EOW Odisha. It is a serious case of organized bank fraud involving loan worth crores of Rupees taken in the name of more than 300 employees Sambad by using fraudulent means and forged documents." 

The expulsion of Soumya Ranjan Patnaik came after the MLA raised questions on the visits of 5T Secretary VK Pandian to various districts through his editorials and media statements.

In his reaction, legislator Parida said, “It is definitely a conspiracy against me. I was not involved in any scam. Nor am I involved in any scam or corruption now. If my organisation is involved in corruption, the matter is sub-judice. And, I was not the proprietor of that organisation. I was a partner.”

Subsequently, the Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Odisha Crime Branch raided the office of the daily newspaper, Sambad, owned by Soumya Ranjan Patnaik over alleged loan fraud. Three joint teams comprising 12 officials of EOW, and Commissionerate Police conducted the raids at the Sambad office in Rasulgarh area of Bhubaneswar.