Pradeep Pattanayak

Political heat in the State went up several notches with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Congress on Sunday launching a scathing attack on the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) after the ruling party was listed as the second richest regional political party in India by the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR). 

As per the report by ADR, the BJD has the second-highest income of Rs 307.288 crore. 

The BJP termed the income shown by the ADR report as the tip of the iceberg. 

“It is surprising that despite being a regional party, BJD is the second richest regional party in India. As per the information I have collected from different sources including their (BJD) party people, apart from the legal funding, the BJD has collected black money worth Rs 4500 crore in these 23 years,” claimed BJP State General Secretary, Prithviraj Harichandan. 

“They (BJD) have kept the money at different points. This is why they spend money like water during elections.  If industrial houses are not coming to Odisha, the only reason is they (BJD) are demanding a huge amount at the time of MoU signing,” alleged Harichandan. 

The Congress too cornered the ruling BJD dispensation over the ADR report. 

“From where have they collected so much money? From where has Naveen Babu collected this much money during these 25 years?” asked senior Congress leader, Suresh Routray. 

“Their (BJD) job is to take non-Odia officers along with them abroad and in different cities in India to collect money from different industrial houses. People will give them (BJD) a befitting reply in 2024,” he added. 

In its response, the BJD hit back at the BJP, saying they shouldn’t forget that their party is the richest party in India. 

“It is a common thing that all the parties are required to submit their balance sheets to the Union Government and to the election commissioner. And we are no exception. Every party is collecting money through electoral bonds and membership fees. There is nothing illegal in it. And they (the BJP) shouldn’t forget that their party is the richest party in India,” said BJD MLA, Dhruba Sahoo.

“The incomes of regional political parties have increased during 2020-21 and 2021-22. According to the audit report submitted by the BJD, they registered the highest increase in the income,” said Ranjan Mohanty, coordinator, ADR, Odisha Branch.

  • Reported by: