Internal strife intensifies in Puri BJD ahead of elections

Prameyanews English

Published By : Prameya News Bureau | February 29, 2024 IST

Bhubaneswar, Feb 29: Internal discord is unfolding within the BJD in Puri district as two prominent figures, former minister Sanjay Das Burma and MLA Uma Samantray, vie for the coveted Satyabadi Assembly constituency ticket ahead of the forthcoming elections.

Sanjay Das Burma, a seasoned BJD stalwart who previously represented the Brahmagiri constituency in 2009 and 2014, faced defeat at the hands of BJP’s Lalitendu Bidyadhar Mohapatra in 2019. Recently, a viral video featured Das Burma confidently asserting that the party has earmarked him as the candidate for the Satyabadi seat in the upcoming polls, despite his established stronghold in Brahmagiri, prompting speculation regarding his motives for the shift.

The prospect of a potential BJD-BJP alliance and the vulnerability of the Brahmagiri constituency to a BJP takeover might be influencing Das Burma’s calculus. While he was previously considered for the Puri Lok Sabha seat, Das Burma appears to favor the security of an Assembly seat within the district.

On the other hand, Uma Samantray, the incumbent MLA of Satyabadi, secured victory as an independent candidate in 2014 before aligning with the BJD in 2019, consolidating the party’s presence in Satyabadi. Samantray maintains that the final decision rests with Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, although no official declarations regarding candidates have been forthcoming from the BJD.

The situation remains tense, prompting the party to intervene actively to address the crisis. Both Das Burma and Samantray have been summoned to the BJD headquarters for deliberations. Ultimately, the party’s verdict will determine the contender for the Satyabadi constituency in the imminent elections.

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