Pradeep Pattanayak

After remaining in power for long 23 years, the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) has sloughed its time-tested slogan ‘Biju Odisha’ off and started counting on ‘Naveen Odisha’. 

On the occasion of Biju Jayanti, the conch party’s leaders and workers took the vow of ‘Naveen Odisha’. According to them, ‘Naveen Odisha’ means a new and developed Odisha. In other words, it is the party’s strategy to attract voters by propagating the development Odisha has achieved during Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s regime. 

“In India, Odisha is one of the states which is on the path of development. Whatever progress the state has achieved is due to the leadership of our Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. ‘New Odisha’ means we will take the state to the pinnacle of success,” said BJD leader Debi Prasad Mishra. 

Here the moot question is ‘Will it do the BJD any good?” 

“Who am I to deny if the Biju Janata Dal will say ‘Naveen Odisha’ instead of ‘Odisha’? But it depends on how the people of Odisha will accept it,” observed senior leader Damodar Rout. 

On the other hand, BJD MLA Soumya Ranjan Patnaik at a programme organised on the occasion of Biju Jayanti at Paradip yesterday, said, “Biju Babu couldn’t remain in power for more than seven years. But the party named after him and ruled by his son has been giving you the honey of power for the last 20 to 22 years. But, are you capable enough to taste this honey? If you feel proud of your grandfather’s moustache, none will show respect any longer.”

“Young voters have seen Naveen Patnaik as their Chief Minister in their lifetime. They might not cast their votes in favour of the party after hearing about Biju Babu’s legacy in the 2024 general election. It seems to me that the party is propagating what it has achieved during its tenure,” opined Sandeep Mishra, a political analyst. 

(Reported by Jagadish Das and Harihar Chand, OTV)