As the election is impending, the political dynamics have been changing fast in the landscape of the Paralakhemundi assembly segment of the Gajapati district.
IAS turned politician Bijay Patnaik is likely to be the Congress candidate from this assembly seat this time. He may test his luck in politics for the first time. The former Chief Secretary and Chairman of the Congress Campaign Committee has tried to strengthen the position of the Congress in the district along with Parlakhemundi. He is also visiting the constituency on various occasions. So, his candidature might be final.
Although the BJP had won this seat in the 2019 election, the ruling BJD has been trying hard to wrest the seat from BJP the BJP by any means. Therefore, the party is looking for the right candidate for the upcoming election. So, the list of aspirants for the ruling party ticket is very long this time.
Just before 2019 election, former BJD MLA K. Narayan Rao had crossed over from BJD to BJP and the saffron party had fielded him as the party nominee and he won the election.
Due to intra-party squabble, the BJD official candidate Kalyani Gajapati failed measurably, and came third position with just about 19 percent votes. Whereas, Independent candidate Trirupati Panigrahi bagged the second position.
Meanwhile, Panigrahi has now joined the BJD and iat the forefront of the party's programs. His son Rupesh Panigrahi has also joined BJD. Both have eyed on the ruling party ticket.
Apart from the father-son duo, BJD district youth president S. Lingaraj is also in the race. Former Congress MLA K Suriya is also aspiring to get a BJD ticket. Retired officer J. Janardhan Rao, former district president and state secretary Basant Kumar Das, and Pradeep Naik are also on the list of BJD. Almost ten prospective candidates are waiting for BJD tickets this time. So, whether the BJD will field a new face or trust the old guard this time is now a question.
On the other hand, BJP District President and current MLA K. Narayan Rao seems to be the only aspirant for the BJP ticket. BJP may repeat him.