Odisha : Will tribal voters decide the fate of candidate in Nuapada ?

Prameyanews English

Published By : Prameya News Bureau | May 02, 2024 IST

Bhubaneswar, May 2: The Nuapada assembly constituency in Odisha is witnessing an intriguing political battle, with tribal voters potentially playing a decisive role.

Ghasiram Majhi, a prominent tribal leader and former Congress candidate, has entered the electoral fray as an independent candidate. He was denied a party ticket after the Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) president, Sarat Pattanayak, insisted on fielding a candidate from the Nuapada Assembly seat.

Rajendra Dholakia,the sitting BJD MLA,  is seeking re-election from Nuapada. He won the seat in the previous 2019 Odisha assembly elections, securing 65,647 votes. His victory margin against Congress’ Ghasiram was a little over 20,000 votes.

Abhinandan Panda is now representing the BJP, Panda is making his electoral debut from the Nuapada seat. He is the son of Kalahandi MP Basanta Panda.

Nuapada assembly segment has approximately 2.5 lakh voters, out of which one lakh are tribal voters.

Ghasiram Majhi, despite being denied a party ticket, enjoys significant support from tribal groups in the constituency. The Zilla Adivasi Sangha, a local tribal outfit, has announced its backing for Majhi, making the Nuapada polls interesting.

As an independent candidate, Ghasiram can disrupt the electoral calculations of other parties, given his tribal voter base.

Nuapada was once part of the Balangir Lok Sabha constituency, where Sarat Pattanayak was elected as a Congress MP in 1991 and 1996. However, Nuapada became an Assembly constituency under the Kalahandi Lok Sabha seat after delimitation before the 2009 elections.

Despite several party bigwigs visiting the area, the Congress has won the Nuapada seat only twice since Independence. Sarat Pattanayak himself faced successive defeats in electoral battles, including losing his security deposit in the 2019 elections.

Dholakia faces opposition within the BJD, with party members Saroj Sahu and Harish Chandra Panda defecting to the BJP due to alleged corruption by the sitting MLA.

Abhinandan Panda’s candidature has also sparked protests in the constituency.

So, the tribal voters hold the key to the Nuapada Assembly seat, and Ghasiram Majhi’s independent candidacy adds an interesting dimension to the electoral scenario this time. 

  • Odisha Election 2024

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