Intra-party dispute in BJD’s Sundergarh Assembly constituency intensifies

Sundergarh: Amid talks of rift in BJD’s Sundergarh Assembly constituency after party leader Kusum Tete’s protest against entry of former Congress MLA Jogesh Singh into the party fold recently, the intra-party fighting seems to have intensified.

According to sources, both Jogesh and Tete are leaving no stone unturned to win the confidence of the party supremo to get the election ticket.

Tete, who lost the Assembly seat to Singh during last general elections, showed her strength by organising a mass public rally today in presence of BJD Sundergarh district president Mangala Kisan. However, Jogesh Singh was not seen during the rally.

Earlier on February 8, Singh was given a heartfelt welcome by his supporters who organised a massive public rally just after he joined BJD in presence of CM Naveen Patnaik. However, Tete was absent from the rally.

Following speculations of intra-party rivalry ahead of Singh joining the party, district observer Prasant Nanda and MLA Pranab Prakash Das held a meeting to convince Tete’s supporters and workers in the constituency but it remained inconclusive.

Asked about the matter, Jogesh Singh said, “My candidature lies in the hands of Chief Minister and party supremo Naveen Patnaik. I along with my supporters will accept his decision. After a day of campaigning it is clear as to how much the public supports us. I am sure we will clean sweep all the seven Assembly seats during the ensuing elections.”

On the other hand, Tete said that since she had been working for the party for so long, people want her to fight for them. “Results of the upcoming elections will make it clear who has better public support,” she said.

However, BJD district president Mangala Kisan refuted speculations of any rift between the leaders. “Be it Ajay Patel, Kusum Tete or Jogesh Singh all are the members of our party and we will continue to work together,” said Kisan.