My sole aim is to ensure Naveen fails to form Govt in Odisha: Dama Rout

Bhubaneswar: Amid growing speculations about his son Sambit Routray being considered an aspirant for the Paradip Assembly constituency, senior leader and Paradip MLA Damodar Rout today said he has no idea whether his son is aspiring to be the BJD candidate from Paradip, but pledged that he will ensure Naveen Patnaik fails to form the government in Odisha post general elections this year.

“Yes, I have given birth to him (Sambit) but that doesn’t mean I can/will control him and stop him from going against me. How would I know what he wants? The only thing I know is, capable or incapable, I will fight and ensure that Naveen Patnaik fails to form government this time,” said Rout.

“It’s been around 45 years that I am in politics and I am aware what people of Odisha wish for. If you all think I am a senior and experienced leader, why was I thrown out of the party? Was I involved in corruption or handed a notice by CBI?,” Dama further questioned.

Responding to a query on whether he is joining the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Rout said, “I will soon take a decision regarding my joining. I am in touch with the senior leaders and discussion is on.”

Rout had also clarified that he is not lobbying for tickets for his son and daughter. “My son and daughter are grown-ups and they will take their individual decisions. I am not lobbying for them,” he had said while speaking to OTV.

Gossips spread like wildfire today after Rout’s son Sambit Routray was seen at the Naveen Niwas, the official residence of Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik, along with other ticket aspirants of the BJD. Though his candidature is still not confirmed, Sambit said he is keen to contest the polls this time.

Meanwhile, Sambit said, “He (Damodar Rout) has never compromised in his life. He is not a person with that mindset; otherwise he would have compromised in many places, which has never happened. And I cannot say whether he is planning to join the BJP or the Congress. It’s his decision.”