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Bhubaneswar:  Ahead of the BJP National Executive meeting, Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Friday said Odisha will be a laboratory for testing of the BJP-led central government's pro-poor policies.

He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit Odisha to thank the people for their unprecedented support to the Bharatiya Janata Party in the panchayat polls.

The Minister said the BJP will welcome leaders with clean image from rival parties into the party-fold to strengthen its base in the region.

"Whoever is committed to the leadership of Modi and BJP President Amit Shah are welcome to join us," said Pradhan.

He said the BJP will emerge as the natural party for governance in the state by 2019.

"A few years ago, we were number three in the state. We became number two in the panchayat polls. We will be the natural party of governance in the state by 2019 and that's largely because of the Prime Minister's credibility in Odisha," said the Minister.

Meanwhile, as Amit Shah reached Bhubaneswar to attend the Executive Meeting scheduled for April 15 and 16, he was welcomed by party workers at the airport here.

Shah then proceeded towards AG Square amid tight security, where he paid floral tributes to Indian Constitution's founding father Bhimrao Ambedkar on his 126th birth anniversary.

He is scheduled to join Odia New Year celebrations at the state BJP headquarters in the evening.

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