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Pradeep Singh

Bhubaneswar: With the 2019 polls barely one-and-half months away, the incumbent and consecutive three-time BJD MP from Dhenkanal Tathagata Satpathy has decided to quit politics, thereby ending a long career in Odisha's statecraft.

Speculations of Satpathy quitting politics started making rounds on Monday, after he attended an 11-day ritual (shraddha) of an acquaintance in Angul district along with members of all the seven assembly segments and later tweeted that he happily bid adieu to them.

"Today at Bhakti babu's mother's 11th Day after death, Angul. Huge gathering. Nearly my total gang(all not in photo) from all 7 Assembly segments was invited/present. Lunched and happily bid Adieu to all," he tweeted.

As per reports, Satpathy intends to shift his focus from politics to journalism and will soon meet Odisha Chief Minister and BJD president Naveen Patnaik to apprise him about his decision not to contest election anymore.

"I am quitting politics as it is the wish of my son. I have only one pressure- son's pressure. My son wants me to stay at home, focus on journalism and not to contest election," said Satpathy while speaking exclusively to OTV over phone.

“There is a dearth of fearless and unbiased journalism  practitioners in Odisha. Almost all media houses have been sold out,” said Satpathy, adding that he would not join any other party as he has great respect for CM Naveen and is happily quitting.

He further said that the time has come that people who are now old and have been elected multiple times to step down to make way for new ideas and new policymakers.

Moreover, speculations are rife that the parliamentarian's wife Adyasha Satpathy may replace him and contest from the Dhenkanal Lok Sabha constituency.

It is pertinent to mention here that the Naveen Patnaik government, which is vouching for 33 per cent reservation of women in legislative assemblies and Parliament, is seriously considering to induct more women into the party fold in the upcoming elections and Adyasha being considered a suitable replacement for her husband can't be brushed aside. However, the parliamentarian also put all these speculations to rest by stating that, in no way, his wife would not contest election.

Meanwhile, on Satpathy's decision, Bhubaneswar MP Prasanna Patsani said, "Someone eligible like him (Satpathy) should contest election. I think people will force him contest election like they do with me as we have always worked in the interest of people."

"I have heard that Tathagata babu is not going to join any other political party, rather he will just not contest in election," said Cuttack MP Bhartruhari Mahtab, adding that journalists always stay in politics.

On the other hand, senior journalist Prasanna Mohanty said that a senior editor like Tathagata Satpathy quitting politics has raised many questions while hinting at 'leaving a sinking ship'.

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