No More Interested In Poll Politics But Will Be With Public: Dama Rout

Bhubaneswar: Shortly after the State unit of BJP released the list of star campaigners for upcoming Bijepur bypoll, Senior BJP leader Damodar Rout today hinted at not contesting direct elections in future and said that he is no more interested in election politics.

Interestingly, Rout who was among the star campaigners for the BJP in the last elections has been excluded from the list. On the development, Rout in an exclusive interview to OTV said that he is being ignored by the BJP and has now somewhat become unwanted in the saffron party.

“Before the general elections, BJP leaders called me and inducted me into the party. I was given important responsibilities during the election campaigns. After the elections are over, now the party leaders are ignoring me,” Rout said.

“I learnt about the Bijepur by-election from the media. Our party members did not tell me about it. I was also not invited to the meeting of the party,” Rout added.

Responding to exclusion of Rout’s name from the star campaignerss list for Bijepur bypoll, Odisha BJP president Basant Panda said that Rout has always been respected and the party never ignores its leaders or workers. “As the bypoll is in the western part of Odisha, if required, Rout will also be invited,” said Panda.

Apart from BJP, the ruling BJD and Congress too released lists of their party star campaigners for the bypoll scheduled for October 31.

The BJP has released a list naming 24 party leaders of national and state level as star campaigners for the party which includes Working President JP Nadda, national Vice-President Baijayant Panda, Union Ministers Dharmendra Pradhan, Smriti Zubin Irani and Pratap Sarangi.

Similarly, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, Ananga Udaya Singh Deo, Prasanna Acharya, Mangal Kissan, Prafulla Mallick and Pradeep Amat among others are the star campaigners of BJD for the crucial bypoll.

Moreover, Congress president Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Priyanka Gandhi, Jitendra Singh, TS Singh Deo, Niranjan Patnaik and Narasingha Mishra will hit campaign trail for the party candidate in Bijepur.