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Go to villages, Naveen tells party men

Bhubaneswar: In retaliatory step to BJP’s booth capture strategy, BJD president and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today advised his party workers to remain in touch with the people and work for them continuously.

“The BJD has been strengthened by the people who have voted for us in successive elections in last 17 years. We need to reinforce this relationship with them. The party will launch a special programme to connect with people from July 1,” Patnaik said at a party programme marking completion of the third year of the BJD’s fourth term in the government.

While Patnaik launched a veiled attack against the opposition BJP, his senior party colleagues like MP Tathagat Satpathy, BJD vice-president Damodar Rout and Prasanna Acharya were highly critical of the BJP.

“Some parties believe in mis-campaign while BJD has been working for the development of the state. We believe in work and not in words,” Patnaik said adding some work for the political benefits of their parties, BJD continued to concentrate on the state’s progress.

The chief minister claimed that his government has achieved much progress in reducing infant mortality rate, maternal mortality rate, immunisation, welfare schemes for ST and SC students and many more. His government, perhaps the first in the country, has adopted BJD’s election manifesto in the cabinet and has worked accordingly, Patnaik claimed.

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Stating that his party is open to professionals and intellectual joining it, Patnaik invited the youths to work for the party as “Biju Sasthi”.

“We need to take a clear stand on the BJP,” said Dhenkanal MP Tathagat Satpathy and claimed that the word “Naveen Patnaik” fetches votes in Odisha.

Rajya Sabha MP and BJD vice-president Prasanna Acharya dubbed the BJP as an “empty vessel” which makes noise over a small achievement in the panchayat elections. In fact, they have no base in the state while BJD is deeply rooted across the state, Acharya said.

Senior Minister and BJD vice-president Damodar Rout said, “BJP was taught a lesson by the people of Odisha in 2014 general elections. While people sent 20 BJD MPs to Lok Sabha, BJP got only one seat. Similarly, the people elected 117 BJD MLAs against the BJP’s just 10.”

Rout supported Acharya’s narration on the BJP. “In fact, empty vessel sounds much. The BJP people make more noise as they are empty within,” Rout said.

The function was attended by all the senior BJD leaders, MPs, MLAs and others. The party also chalked out a strategy to launch the “Ama Gaon, Ama Vikas (Our village, Our Development)” programme.

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