Bhubaneswar: Odisha minister and BJD’s Ghasipura Assembly candidate Badri Narayan Patra is likely to see a tough fight in the 2019 elections, as OPCC chief Niranjan Patnaik has reportedly accepted his challenge to contest from Ghasipura. Patnaik said that he will fight from Ghasipura if All India Congress Committee (AICC) gives a go ahead.
Taking a dig at Patra, the PCC chief said, "I don't have the power to get involved in violence and criminal activities like Patra but I definitely have guts to fight the election. To prove this, I have requested AICC to consider fielding me from the Ghasipura constituency. Further if AICC recommends, I will contest from two seats."
"Can't compete with him (Badri Patra) as far as violence & criminal activities are concerned but I have guts to fight the elections. I have requested AICC to consider fielding me from Ghasipura. If AICC recommends, will contest from 2 seats", says OPCC chief on #RaceForGhasipura pic.twitter.com/uZOv03PKbE
— OTV (@otvnews) March 30, 2019
Responding to this, Badri Patra said, "People of Ghasipura don't even remember Niranjan Patnaik as they haven't seen him for the past 10 years. His (Niranjan) candidature will have no impact, whatsoever."
Informing on the development earlier today, Congress’ Keonjhar district working president Ratikant Baral had stated that Patnaik has accepted the open challenge thrown by Badri Patra and is ready to contest for the Ghasipura seat. Baral had further said that the Odisha Congress chief is likely to contest from two assembly constituencies this time, Bhandaripokhari being the second one.
On Friday, Badri Patra dared Niranjan Patnaik to contest from Ghasipura saying "Those campaigning against me own TV channels, newspapers, but still I ask them to contest against me. Even if I am injured, I will win regardless of whoever stands against me in Ghasipura."
The race for Ghasipura had aggravated a few months back when Niranjan Patnaik, responding to a query on him fighting elections from Ghasipura, said, "If Badri Patra contests from the Assembly seat, I will consider fighting the elections from there. If he doesn't, we will decide our candidate accordingly."
For now, it is Niranjan Patnaik Vs Badri Patra, but whoever wins, buzz says will win only after a strong fight.