Bhubaneswar: Niranjan Patnaik who once criticized outgoing Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) president Prasad Harichandan's jumbo team saying 'too many cooks spoil the broth,' is now the new OPCC chief and it remains to be seen how he takes the party forward with his team, whose size seems not quite different from his predecessor's.
Eyes are set on the jumbo team of Patnaik as there are quite a few challenges before it to strengthen the party's organisation before the 2019 general elections.
As per sources, even though the specific details of the responsibilities of the new team are yet to be chalked out, after a meeting with AICC, it was decided that the newly-appointed three working presidents of OPCC will be given organisational responsibility of three zones in Odisha and the chairperson of the campaign committee will immediately start preparing the campaign strategy for 2019 general elections, whereas the responsibility of the coordination committee is yet to be ascertained.
"The team will prove lucky for Congress in coming days and it will fight to gain power in 2019 elections," said former OPCC president and newly-appointed core committee chairperson Jaydev Jena.
"AICC Odisha in-charge Jitendra Singh will be coming to the State along with party secretaries and the new OPCC president. After their arrival it will be decided who will be assigned with what responsibilities," said another former OPCC president and newly-appointed core committee convenor, Sarat Patnaik.
"The Congress was never derailed but it is not moving as fast as an express train. Let's wait and see how well the new engine pulls the train," said Leader of Opposition, Narasingha Mishra.
"Three senior leaders have been appointed as working presidents and there is no second opinion on that. Congress organization will surely be strengthened and we have vowed to support the party," said Opposition chief whip Tara Prasad Bahinipati.
In the meantime, Odisha Congress has planned to organize a huge rally in Bhubaneswar to welcome the new team members, who will be returning from New Delhi tomorrow. The new team is also likely to hold discussions with all district presidents of the party in Bhubaneswar on Sunday.