Former IAS officer Aparajita Sarangi joins BJP

Bhubaneswar/New Delhi: Former IAS officer Aparajita Sarangi formally joined BJP today during a program held at the residence of  party’s national president Amit Shah in New Delhi.

Many senior leaders including Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, Odisha BJP unit president Basant Panda and State in-charge Arun Singh were also present during the program. The bureaucrat-turned-politician is expected to return to Bhubaneswar tomorrow.

Speaking at a presser after the program, Sarangi said she chose to enter politics after voluntarily retiring from service, 11 years ahead of schedule as politics offered her a huge medium for offering service to the people.

“While in service we work in a limited environment and are fixed to certain boundaries in politics there is a huge platform. During my central deputation in the last 5 years, I got the opportunity to witness Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s determination for speedy development and hard work which has influenced me a lot so I decided to join the party,” Sarangi said.

Aparajita, the 1994 batch Odisha-cadre IAS officer was on central deputation since 2013. She was supposed to return to Odisha in October. However, she had applied for VRS in September this year.

Sarangi’s application for VRS was approved by PM Modi on November 16.

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During her stint in Odisha, Sarangi had become a popular face as the Secretary of School & Mass Education Department and Commissioner of Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation.

Leader of Opposition (LoP) and senior Congress leader Narasingha Mishra said that Sarangi’s induction will not have any impact on the political scenario in Odisha.

“This is not the first time that a bureaucrat has joined any political party. I don’t know why the matter is getting so much of importance. She has not practiced politics ever and this just the beginning of her political career. Her induction to the BJP won’t have any effect on State politics,” said Mishra.

Meanwhile, BJD leader Pratap Deb said, “It would have been good if she would have joined the saffron party much earlier. She has joined BJP after taking voluntarily retirement scheme (VRS) from her service. If she likes the ideology of that party, it’s her own perception. Only after knowing on what she wants to do for Odisha, we can then only comment on it,” said Deb.

Deb further stated that people of Odisha will analyse the works done by BJP which has been ruling at the Centre since 5 years.