Pradeep Pattanayak

Mohan Hembram, who was first nominated by the Congress as its Lok Sabha candidate for Keonjhar and was later withdrawn, resigned from the party on Saturday. 

Mohan Hembram along with his wife Jhuna Patnaik resigned after the party nominated Binod Bihari Nayak as its new candidate for the Keonjhar LS seat.

A fuming Mohan asked the party to return Rs 7,50,000 to him within 48 hours or else he would take legal action. He said he had given Rs 50,000 to the PCC and spent Rs 7,00,000 after getting a ticket. 

“I have spent Rs 7 lakh for making posters, banners and recording songs. I have paid Rs 3.5 lakhs to them. Now they are asking for the rest Rs 3.5 lakhs. From where will I pay them?” asked Mohan.

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“The decisions of the AICC and PCC have brought us to such a situation that we are being humiliated at every level. My friends and well-wishers are still clueless as to why my candidature has been cancelled. Don’t have I talent to contest as an MP candidate,” said Mohan. 

Meanwhile, Binod Bihari Nayak, the party’s new candidate for Keonjhar Lok Sabha seat said, “At first, the PCC had announced his (Mohan) name.  Then the district-level and state-level leaders wanted me to contest from the Keonjhar seat. So my name was announced. He was never in the district and was doing rounds of the PCC office. But I was at the ground level, seriously working on strengthening the organisation. I have been with the people and their blessings are with me,” said Nayak. 

Notably, the Congress had announced Mohan’s name as its Lok Sabha candidate for the Keonjhar seat on April 13. The party again announced Binod Bihari Nayak as its candidate for the same Lok Sabha seat.

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