Bhubaneswar, Oct 7: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s recent statement on his successor has created speculation among political pundits and party workers.
The 75-year-old politician who served as Chief Minister of Odisha for five consecutive terms in a recent interview to ‘The Week’ dropped hints at his successor and the future of the Biju Janata Dal (BJD). The BJD was floated by Naveen after the demise of the former Chief Minister and his father Biju Patnaik in 1997.
“The BJD is a vibrant political party with strong democratic values. It enjoys the confidence of the people of Odisha. The party has definite plans and it will serve the people affectionately for a long time to come,” Naveen said to the magazine in his interview.
If Naveen is elected to power in the next general election, he will break the record of former Bengal Chief Minister Jyoti Basu who remained in power for 23 years
Earlier, there was speculation that somebody from his family will take over the rein from bachelor Naveen. However, he has dismissed similar speculations saying that the BJD has turned into a movement and the people of Odisha will choose his successor.
However, his recent remark to the magazine has given a new twist. People in the state and political observers are eagerly waiting to know whether he will choose his successor from his own family or BJD.