Pradeep Pattanayak

With less than two years left to the 2024 general elections, a race has already been started among the three major political parties-Biju Janata Dal (BJD), Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Congress- to make their political footprint stronger. 

This month is going to be full of political activities with the political parties scheduling their programmes this month. From the way the programmes have been scheduled, one thing is as clear as crystal that the political parties are leaving no stone unturned not just to lay foundations for the 2024 general elections but also to make them stronger. 

If the number of programmes in September is taken into consideration, then the BJP will be on the top with maximum number programmes.  

The party’s new Odisha prabhari (in-charge) Sunil Bansal will be in Odisha on September 5 and 6. He will hold discussions with the party functionaries to assess the party’s progress in the State. 

Later, the party’s general secretary (organization) B L Santosh will visit the State. He will meet the leaders and workers and impart training to them for the upcoming big battle. 

Towards the end of the month, the party’s national president JP Nadda will pay a visit to the State. Party sources said, he will sound the bugle for the 2024 general elections. During his visit, he will address a mega congregation. 

“Besides the visit of our national president, there will be a three-day-long training camp starting from September 13. Our efforts are on to ensure how our party will face the general elections successfully and have a chance to serve the nation,” said BJP spokesperson Biranchi Narayan Tripathy. 

The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) is not lagging behind. It has also finalized its strategies to counter the Saffron party. 

Party Supremo and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik will be felicitated with Lifetime Achievement Award by the Capital Foundation at a specially organized event in Delhi tomorrow which will be attended by thousands of Odia expats living in Delhi. 

Upon his arrival on September 6, he will be accorded a huge welcome for which the party has already started its preparations. To ensure everything should go as planned, starting from frontline leaders to leaders of youth, student and woman wings have camped in Delhi. 

Informing about his party’s programmes, Odisha Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak said, “It is a matter of great pride for the entire State that our Chief Minister is receiving Lifetime Achievement Award in Delhi. It is natural that the CM would be accorded a grand welcome.”

The grand old party Congress too has several programmes to make its presence known. 

Protesting against the prices of essential commodities skyrocketing, the party will stage a massive demonstration in Delhi tomorrow. For this, OPCC president Sarat Pattanayak and other leaders are away in Delhi. 

Similarly, Rahul Gandhi will embark on a 3,570-km-long Bharat Jodo yatra, which will start from Kanyakumari.  This programme is dubbed as the Congress’s mass outreach programme ahead of the general elections. 

Back in the State, ‘Mehngai Pe Charcha’ is also underway. 

“While prices of essential commodities are going up, the unemployment problem is becoming excruciating. At the same time, farmers are ending their lives. People are no longer ignorant. They are not in a mood to tolerate the BJP. In coming days, people will spontaneously come forward and spread the message of our leader Rahul Gandhi across the nation,” observed OPCC president Sarat Pattanayak. 

According to political analysts, the State BJP is emerging as a headache for the BJD and Congress. 

“From the political point of view, August, September and October are three crucial months. The political parties have visibly become active. But the most important thing is how they will succeed in reaching out to the people,” opined political analyst Rabi Das.