Bhubaneswar: Exactly a year after taking charge as President of Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC), Prasad Harichandan today admitted that there are differences among leaders of the party’s State unit.
The absence of some leaders at a programme celebrating the foundation day of the party at the Congress Bhavan here pointed towards differences in the party.
Talking to mediapersons, Harichandan said, “At different times, there are different views in the party. However, we try our best to sort out the differences. No one can guarantee that there will not be differences in the party in future. In a democratic party, there are different viewpoints while there is no scope for a different view in an autocratic party.”
Political pundits find Harichandan’s statement at variance with his earlier slogan of ‘Mun Nuhe Aame’ (We, not me) that he pronounced a year back on talking charge of the state unit.
Former OPCC president Jayadev Jena echoed Harichandan’s statement saying, “In a big party, dissatisfaction among leaders is natural. But it vanishes in due course and we all work together. The important thing is that senior leaders of the party are working together.”
Another OPCC president Niranjan Patnaik, however, struck a different note. "No test has been conducted to know whether people have accepted the Congress or not,” adding that the party should be strengthened as it has been away from people for a long period.
Extending support to Bhakta Das over his recent remark that senior leaders are being ignored in the party, OPCC vice president Pradeep Majhi said, “We should respect his statement. Different views exist in all parties, we cannot avoid that. However, in our party, there is no issue in working together.”
Das had challenged the decision of Harichandan over the appointment of former MLA from Junagarh, Gobardhan Das, as the president of the Kalahandi district unit without consulting him. He had alleged, “The way the present leadership is behaving is bound to weaken the party."