Berhampur, March 20 (LocalWire): With less than a month to go, the ruling party today got a massive jolt in Ganjam, Gajapati and Kandhmal districts as the sitting MP of Kandhamal and MLA from Aska and two other former MLAs resigned protesting denial of party tickets,
Pratyusha Rajeshwari Singh, the BJD sitting MP from Kandhamal, who was elected in a by-election in October 2014 after the death of her husband Hemendra Chandra Singh, is yet to decide which party to join. She wanted to contest from Kandhamal Lok Sabha or from Nayagarh Assembly segment but was denied a ticket for Kandhamal seat which was instead given to Achyut Samant, a Rajya Sabha member.
‘A party that has been so vocal about women empowerment has failed me miserably. My hard work and dedication has been rendered futile,’ she wrote in her letter to the party supremo Naveen Patnaik. She also accused the rural development minister Bikram Arukh and MLA, Nayagarh, Arun Sahoo, in the resignation letter.
Debaraj Mohanty, three time MLA from Aska joined the BJP after resigning from the party as he was denied a ticket. The BJD replaced him with Manjula Swain, wife of late Ladu Kishore Swain MP from Aska, who passed away last month.
‘I have decided to join the BJP after consulting my supporters,’ said Mohanty who won the seat in 2000, 2009 and 2014.
Niranjan Pradhan, two time former MLA of Polasara and K Narayan Rao, former MLA from Paralakhemundi, joined the BJP along with their supporters at Bhubaneswar.
‘We worked tirelessly for the party for the last five years but I was not consulted before giving the ticket to Kalyani Gajapati, daughter of former MP (Berhampur) Gopinath Narayan Gajapati Deo,’ said Rao who was elected from Paralakhemundi in 2009.
Upset over denial of ticket, his supporters had gone on a rampage at the party office at Paralakhemundi. Rao is likely to contest Paralakhemundi with a BJP ticket.
Similalry Pradhan, who had won from Polasara segment in 2004 and 2009, was hopeful to get the BJD ticket to contest this time. But the party chose Srikant Sahu, the sitting MLA to seek-re-election. ‘I am upset that the party wants to re-nominate to Sahu once again,’ said Pradhan. ‘In protest, I along with several of my supporters joined the BJP and my aim is to defeat Sahu,’ he added.