What can be seen as a significant development ahead of the results of national polls 2019, Naveen Patnaik-led Biju Janata Dal (BJD) said it is ready to support any party whosoever guarantee the progress and protect the interest of the state. This is seen as a shift in the stand of Odisha ruling party who earlier maintained that it will not ally and will maintain the “equal distance” from both the BJP and the Congress.
It should be noted that special status issue for Odisha is a big poll issue for Biju Janata Party and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.
Biju Janata Dal (BJD) Vice President Surya Narayan Patro speaking about the possibilities of allying with national parties after Results said that we will give up its official policy of not ally with BJP or Congress.
He added that his party will be going to a major player and will play an important role in the formation of the next government.
It should be noted that BJD, once an ally of Bharatiya Janata Party, had in 2009 before national polls walked out of the alliance over the seat-sharing dispute. BJD at that time called the BJP ‘a communal party’. BJD was in an alliance with the saffron party for almost nine years from 2000 to 2009.
Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had praised Naveen Patnaik for rescue and relief operations in cyclone Fani affected areas in the state. CM Naveen Patnaik had after the Fani Cyclone demanded special status to the state saying that state is ‘Disaster prone’.
General elections are being held in seven phases and will conclude on May 19. Counting for the mega battle of ballots will be held on May 23.
United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Chairperson Sonia Gandhi has reportedly sent a letter to all non-NDA parties for the opposition meeting. Reportedly SP–BSP Chiefs is expected to be a big face in the opposition meeting.