Bhubaneswar, Feb 23 (localWire): If sources in the Naveen Patnaik-led Biju Janata Dal (BJD) are to be believed distribution of party tickets for the upcoming general elections may turn out to be an invidious exercise.
With chief minister indicating that tickets may be denied to around 50 sitting MLAs murmurings can already be heard in the party.
The buzz about ticket denial has got stronger with chit fund scam-tainted MLAs and MPs coming under the leadership’s scanner.
The image-conscious chief minister has also taken note of growing demand for action against Cuttack-Barabati MLA, Debashish Samantray, who is keen on contesting from Paradip this time, for misbehaving with the relative of a martyr of the Pulwama terror attack who hailed from Cuttack district.
Sources said the leadership has made a list of leaders who have been involved in similar cases of misbehaviour.
Yet another case being that of Junagarh MLA, Captain Dibyashankar Mishra who had found himself in the midst of an unsavoury controversy after a video showing him threatening a physically challenged person at a public meeting went viral.
As far as chit fund cases are concerned, the leaders who may find themselves in trouble include Ramchandra Hansdah, the sitting MP from Mayurbhan, Banki MLA, Pravat Tripathy and Cuttack-Chowdwar MLA, Pravat Biswal.
Even leaders like Brahmagiri MLA, Sanjay Das Burma and former minister, Arun Sahu could find themselves in the line of fire.
While Hansdah, Tripathy and Biswal had been arrested by the CBI in connection with chit fund scam and are now out on bail, the other two leaders had received notices from the investigating agency.
The problem for chief minister Naveen Patnaik, who has been talking about zero tolerance against corruption, is that some of these MLAs are perceived to be close to him and also enjoy sizeable clout in their respective constituencies.
Denying tickets to them could have repercussions for the party in the course of campaign when the chief minister would be touring the length and breadth of the state.