Cassian Baliarsingh

The demand for Notified Area Council (NAC) status for Borigumma has once again intensified with the Congress and BJP accusing the Naveen Patnaik-led BJD government of playing ‘dirty politics’.  Despite repeated protests by various organisations and political parties, Borigumma, one of the largest panchayats of Odisha, has been deprived of the NAC status.

The demand for NAC status that began during the 2019 General Elections has now become a political gimmick while the residents here are bearing the brunt. With the 2024 General Elections inching closer, the BJP lambasted the conch party to stop playing ‘politics’ and immediately declare Borigumma as an NAC.

BJP leader Sudhansu Sekhar Jena said, “It is the demand and rights of Borigumma people to get NAC status. Borigumma rightfully has all the criteria and credentials required to be declared an NAC. However, the ruling BJD party is playing dirty politics and showing step stepmotherly attitude to Borigumma. So, we have decided to start a mass agitation if they do not listen to our demands within a week.”

Similarly, Congress leader and Jeypore MLA Tara Bahinipati said, “We all know that Borigumma is the largest panchayat in Odisha. It is home to around 15000 voters. It is in the heart of Koraput and connects with Visakhapatnam. So, ideally, it should have been declared an NAC, but they are playing politics. But, the people of Borigumma will show them (those playing politics) their power during the election.”

On the other hand, senior BJD leader Rabinarayan Nanda asked the people to have patience and promised that the right thing would be done at the right time.

“Borigumma has everything that it requires to be declared an NAC. So, I request the people to have patience. There is no doubt that it will be declared an NAC very soon. I assure the people of Borigumma on behalf of our BJD party,” Rabinarayan Nanda said.