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Mrunal Manmay Dash

Bhubaneswar: In a bid to revive the Grand Old Party in Odisha, veteran and seasoned leaders of the State unit of Congress met at the party headquarters here in the city to deliberate on the forthcoming selection of a fitting candidate to spearhead the youth wing of the party.

As per reports, as applications were earlier invited from potential aspirants for the coveted position in the party, various candidates were seen crowding the Congress Bhawan today with their supporters to show their strength.

A screening committee appointed by the Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) was entrusted with the job of weeding out some suitable names from the pool of aspirants popped out from across Odisha. Following the recommendation of the committee, the OPCC is supposed to select a name who would be crowned as the Chief of Youth Congress.

Ranjib Biswal, president of the PCC screening committee said, “Youth Congress leaders and workers have congregated here to chalk out a plan to re-enforce the party and make the youths battle-ready for any occasion.”

Pradeep Majhi, the convenor of the committee, who was also present at Congress Bhawan said, “Youth Congress in Odisha is languishing and so we carried out an exercise to shortlist 5/6 aspirants for selection of the party's youth wing chief. The list will be provided to OPCC president for final selection”

One of the main contenders of the post, who happens to be the ex-president of Utkal University Student’s Union, Manoj Biswal said, “We want a person to be the chief of Youth Congress who is involved with the party at the grass-roots level.”

Rajeev Patnaik, another shortlisted aspirant who contests from Bhubaneswar Central Assembly Constituency said, “There are a lot of deserving candidates in our party. I am fine with anybody whom the AICC and OPCC deem fit to lead the youth brigade.”

Niranjan Nayak, a close associate of OPCC Chief Niranjan Patnaik and a frontrunner for the post said, “I will accept the leadership of whoever NiranjanPatnaik appoints as Youth Congress Chief.”

The extended executive body meeting of Youth Congress is scheduled to be held on Monday.

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