Naveen invites PM Modi for swearing-in ceremony on May 29

Bhubaneswar: BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik is all set to take oath as the Chief Minister of Odisha for the fifth consecutive term on May 29. As per his previous announcement, Patnaik has invited Prime Minister Narendra Modi to attend his swearing-in ceremony.

The invitation comes in the wake of the war of words which broke out between Patnaik and Modi during the Odisha elections 2019 campaigning. It is pertinent to mention here that Modi during a poll meeting had claimed that Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik’s exit in 2019 elections was almost certain. Responding to the barb, Patnaik had exuded confidence and even invited PM Modi for his swearing-in ceremony.

Meanwhile, all eyes are now on Naveen Patnaik amid speculations on who will get a berth in his council of ministers. As the suspense continues, BJD is said to have come up with a new formula to pick up ministers from among the elected MLAs.

Sources said emphasis will be given to those Lok Sabha constituencies where the party has won maximum Assembly seats. Going by this formula, except in Bargarh, BJD MP candidates have won from Kandhamal, Kendrapara, Dhenkanal, Jajpur and Jagatsinghjpur Lok Saba constituencies.

Similarly, six MLAs have won respectively from Aska, Bhubaneswar, Keonjhar, Cuttack and Bhadrak parliamentary constituencies. It is also being speculated that the party could give importance to the MLAs from different parliamentary constituencies from where its MPs won despite Modi wave.

“Nothing has been finalised and the CM will take appropriate decision in the larger interest of the constituency and party,” said MLA Kishore Mohanty.

“Whatever duty was assigned by CM, I have followed it with dedication,” said party MLA Amar Satpathy.

“Only CM will decide on who will be included in the cabinet and everybody in the party will abide by it,” said BJD MLA Sameer Dash.

“I don’t have any aspirations to be a minister but will work as a sepoy as per the instructions of the party,” said BJD MLA Dibyashankar Mishra.

Hectic parleys have reportedly begun amidst speculations that several old and new faces as well as women leaders would be given prominence in Naveen Patnaik’s new council of ministers.

Sources further claimed that those leaders who had voluntarily given up their ministerial berths following party’s debacle in 2019 rural polls might make a comeback in the new cabinet. Names of several leaders including Pranab Prakash Das, Arun Sahoo, Pradeep Panigrahi, Debi Prasad Mishra are doing rounds.

Apart from this, the party might even allot key portfolios to four out of 12 elected women MLAs.