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Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

Smarting under the severe reverses suffered by the party in the recently concluded Panchayat polls in Odisha, senior Congress leader Santosh Singh Saluja said it occurred since the party failed to provide financial support to the candidates in the fray.

“The party will face the same fortune again in the upcoming urban local body elections if it doesn’t provide enough financial support to its candidates contesting the elections,” said Saluja.

“BJP led governments were ruling Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand in 2017 and they had provided enough financial support to the saffron party candidates during the previous election. However, Congress candidates didn’t get any support during this Panchayat Elections though the party led governments are ruling the neighbouring states at present,” he said.

According to Saluja, the absence of top leaders of both Congress and BJP during campaigning for the Panchayat elections in the State was another reason for their poor show.

“Both Congress and BJP are national parties. The top leaders of both the parties couldn’t join the campaigns in the State due to their responsibilities in other states. It could be another reason for the poor performance in the Panchayat elections,” said Saluja.

Meanwhile, the senior Congress senior leader slammed the BJD for using money and muscle power to win the elections.

On the other hand, Women and Child Development Minister and BJD leader Tukuni Sahu refuted the charges against the party.

“In 2017 elections, BJD was not able to do well due to internal feud and allotment of tickets to some wrong candidates. The party learnt from its mistakes and made amends in 2021 and achieved grand success now. All the supporters of BJD joined hands to make the Panchayat elections a rousing success for the party,” said Sahu.

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