Koraput, April 2(LocalWire): Jeypore, the only unreserved constituency in Koraput, Rayagada, Nabarangpur and Malkangiri districts, is gearing up for the big fight on April 11 with as many as eight candidates, including the sitting Congress MLA Tara Prasad Bahinipati and BJD’s former minister Rabi Narayan Nanda, in the poll fray.
Winning the battle won’t be a cakewalk for Bahinipati and the uncertainty of electoral politics is keeping all the parties on their toes in Jeypore, where the atmosphere is suddenly charged up.
‘In the last five years people in my segment, specially traders, contractors and businessmen didn’t face any political interference, which was at its extreme during the BJD’s rule,’ said Bahinipati.
‘I will be victorious because I have done a lot of developmental work and have the people’s support,’ he added.
He is spearheading the Congress’s campaigning by organizing village meetings, street plays and rallies to pursue the people where as many as 205944 voters, including 105538 female voters, will exercise their franchise.
While chief minister Naveen Patnaik is scheduled to campaign for Nanda on April 5, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath will be here on Saturday to campaign for BJP’s candidate Goutam Samantoray.
Confident to wrest the seat from the Congress, Nanda said Bahinipati had rendered Jeypore leaderless for five years and people want a change and will vote for the BJD this time.
‘Jeypore lacked development. The MLA never paid attention to people’s grievances and was always away from the constituency,’ said Nanda, a three-time MLA since 2000 who was defeated by Bahinipati in 2014.
However, political observers feel that though the real battle is between Bahinipati and Nanda but the vote garnered by BJD’s debutante Samantaroy could play the decisive factor here.
‘Though the BJP’s organisational base is weak in the constituency, but riding high on the Modi wave, the saffron party is sure to increase its vote percentage and it remains to see which party is losing its vote to the BJP,’ said political analysts.