Rashmi Ranjan

Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Sunday launched a broadside on the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) and said it is not a political party anymore.

Pradhan, who visited the poll-bound Jharsuguda district yesterday, targeted the Naveen Patnaik-led government alleging that the party is being run by two bureaucrats who are not even from Odisha.

“Have you ever heard dread criminals taking shelter in Puri? Have you ever witnessed any Sambalpur-like violence in the State during Hanuman Jayanti celebrations? Odisha never witnessed such things before,” said Pradhan.

“A dictatorship form of government is running in the State. The BJD is not a political party anymore. One or two non-Odia bureaucrats are running the party. Rourkela MLA was heckled during the BJD’s party office inauguration,” the Union Minister added.

Coming down heavily on the State government over Naba Das murder case and abduction and killing of minor boy Samarth Agarwal, Pradhan said, “Industrial hub Jharsuguda need peace, not chaos.”

Notably, the three major political parties of the State- BJD, BJP and Congress have intensified their campaigning ahead of the Jharsuguda bypoll scheduled to be held on May 10. The counting of the votes will be conducted on May 13. 

The BJP has fielded Tankadhar Tripathy as its candidate for the Jharsuguda bypoll. Tankadhar will be contesting against BJD candidate Dipali Das and Congress' Tarun Pandey in the electoral battle. 

The BJD couldn't be contacted for comment on the allegations of the Union Minister.

  • Reported by:
  • Bhagirathi Sahu