Sura Routaray may contest from Bhubaneswar Lok Sabha seat

Prameyanews English

Published By : Prameya News Bureau | February 24, 2024 IST

Bhubaneswar, Feb 23: The Congress and Left parties in Odisha are currently engaged in seat-sharing talks, but it seems they’ve hit a roadblock. The grand old party has decided to field its candidate from the Bhubaneswar Lok Sabha seat in the upcoming elections, which complicates the matter. In the 2019 elections, the CPM had contested from this seat.

Suresh Kumar Routray, a veteran Congress leader, is being projected as the party’s candidate for this seat. Although Routray’s name hasn’t been finalized yet, sources within the party indicate that senior leaders unanimously support his candidature. According to several Congress leaders, Routray’s familiarity makes him more effective in attracting anti-BJD and anti-BJP votes.

 In the 2019 elections, Congress had refrained from fielding any candidate for this seat, instead supporting the CPM’s Janardan Pati. Unfortunately, this strategy backfired, as Pati received only around 23,026 votes which is 2.29 percent of total votes polled. The impact was particularly negative in the seven Assembly constituencies, except for Jatni, where Routray secured a victory against the BJD candidate.

During the 2014 and 2019 Lok Sabha polls, Congress candidates collectively garnered approximately 1.5 lakh votes in this constituency. However, the adverse effects of the 2019 elections on the Congress organization have made it challenging to revive the party in the six Assembly constituencies.

 The Pradesh Election Committee (PEC) recently discussed this issue and is likely to recommend Suresh Routray’s name for the Bhubaneswar Lok Sabha seat. A former Congress minister emphasized that strong Lok Sabha candidates are essential if the party aims to improve its performance in the Assembly elections and secure 90 Assembly seats.

 If the Bhubaneswar seat is conceded to the CPM, Congress’s visibility in this crucial constituency will be reduced to zero, significantly impacting its performance in the Assembly seats. However, the CPM remains adamant about not relinquishing the Bhubaneswar seat, asserting that they will field their own candidate from it.

  • Odisha Election 2024

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