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CM Naveen’s new strategy to boost national appeal?

Bhubaneswar: After seeking inclusion of ‘non-violence’ in the Preamble, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s demand for an official notification to recognize hockey as the national game has created quite some ripples. While many support him, others believe such activism of the Odisha CM is a planned strategy to promote ‘Brand Naveen’ at a national level to garner political mileage.

It is also believed that Naveen’s ‘hockey card’ will draw more support from all quarters.

However, BJP alleged that the CM has raised the issue for political gains.

“He (CM Naveen) is not even able to hold a meeting over the missing key of Puri Srimandir’s Ratna Bhandar but is writing letters on other issues. A person had raised the issue of national game recognition to hockey in 2012 through an RTI application; the CM woke up now. Without knowing the details, making a mountain out of a molehill has become the tendency of the CM,” said BJP spokesperson, Golaka Mohapatra.

Taking a jibe at Naveen, senior Congress leader Tara Bahinipati said “It is welcome that the CM, who has never played any game and lacks knowledge on sports, has taken such a step. To remain in news at the national level, it’s a drama orchestrated by the CM.”

“I can’t accept that CM Naveen is trying to promote himself as he has already got enough recognition at the national level. If the CM is trying to mend a fault then it should be welcomed,” said Odisha Sports Minister, Chandra Sarathi Behera.

On the other hand, international hockey player, Lazrus Barla said that there is no point in raising such issue as the State government has failed to provide jobs to hockey players of the State.

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