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Naveen terms Pyari as betrayer, thief

Bhubaneswar: A day after suspending Rajya Sabha MP Pyari Mohan Mohapatra and two MLAs from ruling BJD and dismissing two ministers, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Saturday said a `mid-night operation` was attempted to topple his government in a `surreptitious manner`. "When I was away for a week on state government`s work to the UK, a mid-night operation took place. It was like a thief in the night who strike at someone`s house when occupants are away," Patnaik said. "Really, what can I say, `Beiman` (betrayer) or `Beimani`", he said.

Patnaik said Mohapatra`s reaction after being suspended was nothing but out of frustration as he failed to topple the BJD government. He was responding to Mohapatra`s statement on Friday calling the Chief Minister a "traitor" and the person who did not have any contribution towards growth of the party. Admitting that he used to consult Mohapatra, his father Biju Patnaik`s secretary, on various matters, the chief minister said Mohapatra joined politics much later.

"The BJD was formed in 1997, I became chief minister in 2000. He joined the party two years after I became the chief minister," Patnaik said in response to Mohapatra`s statement that Naveen did not know the ABC of the BJD though he functioned as the party president. "It was necessary to take steps in view of the situation. I have consulted party leaders, MLAs and Ministers before taking action against some people," Patnaik said.

Mohapatra was not available for comment as he had left for Mumbai to attend a family function. Besides Mohapatra, Patnaik suspended MLAs Pravat Biswal and Bibhuti Balabantray and sacked ministers Anjali Behera (Women and Child Development, cabinet) and Sanjeev Sahu (Commerce and Transport, Minister of State).

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