Odisha Chief Minister and BJD president Naveen Patnaik on Sunday resigned as legislator from the Bijepur Assembly seat and decided to retain his traditional bastion Hinjli Assembly segment. While retaining his membership from Hinjili, he also conveyed gratitude to the people of Bijepur for showing faith in him. This was the first time that the BJD chief had contested from the Bijepur Assembly seat. Whereas, in Hinjili, he had tasted electoral victory for five straight times. The chief minister has sent his resignation to Odisha Assembly Speaker Surya Narayan Patro.
"Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has resigned from Bijepur Assembly seat and has retained Hinjili Assembly seat. He had contested from two seats- Bijepur and Hinjili- in elections to the State Legislative Assembly," the news agency ANI reported.
Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has resigned from Bijepur Assembly seat & has retained Hinjili Assembly seat. He had contested from two seats- Bijepur and Hinjili- in elections to the State Legislative Assembly. (File pic) pic.twitter.com/1PVjNej4Tx— ANI (@ANI) June 2, 2019
The development comes three days after the BJD chief announced several welfare schemes such as piped water supply and Rs 1,330 crore package for pucca houses to 34,000 households having kutcha houses in all the villages of Bijepur Assembly constituency.
Patnaik, who became the Chief Minister of Odisha for a record fifth consecutive term, emerged victorious from both Hinjili Assembly seat in Ganjam district and Bijepur segment in west Odisha during the recently concluded Assembly elections in the state.
Steering the BJD to a landslide victory, the Odisha chief minister defeated his nearest BJP nominee Pitambar Acharya in Hinjili constituency by 60,160 votes. In Bijepur, the BJD chief had defeated his BJP rival Sanat Kumar Gartia by 57,122 votes. The BJD had won 112 of the 147 Assembly seats in Odisha, which held along with Lok Sabha elections across the state.
Patnaik has been winning from Hinjili in Ganjam district since 2000 when he entered state politics after serving as a Union Minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government. In 2014 Assembly elections, Patnaik had won from Hinjili defeating his Congress rival Sibaram Patra by a margin of 76,586 votes. The BJD chief had secured 73.14 per cent of the votes polled.
Meanwhile, Puri MP Pinaki Misra has been nominated as the parliamentary party leader of the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) in the Lok Sabha. Kandhamal MP Achyutananda Samanta has been nominated the BJD chief whip and Kendrapara MP Anubhav Mohanty as the party's deputy chief whip in the Lok Sabha.
(With inputs from agencies)