By Amarendra Mohanty
A person once excelled in history could not probably imagine reaching such heights in politics. He has never looked back after joining politics in 1997 though he was reluctant initially and continues his winning streak till date. His “stand against corruption” and “pro-poor policies” have attracted a huge support base in Odisha which has voted him to power in the last four consecutive terms.
A gifted painter painted a lot of colors in the field of politics to win the hearts of millions of Odia people with his clean image. A renowned writer who scripts various popular schemes to reach to the people at last miles. A person who has spent most part of his youth been away from both politics and Odisha, hardly spends time outside of state after taking the helm of party and Government.
A Doon School alumnus who wins the hearts of students in the rural area by taking many initiatives like mid-day meals, distributing laptops, uniforms, cycles, constructing hostels for tribal students, Mukhya Mantri Medha Bruti (Chief Minister Meritorious Scholarship) etc.
His advice to the students in the recent Children’s Day Speech “You must study hard, remember your duties to your parents and to the village and your state when you grow up,” was well appreciated by one and all.
He has introduced a number of pro-poor schemes from birth to death i.e. Mamata to Harishchandra. It was perceived that the scheme of rice at a price of Rs 2 per kg to poor earlier was a game changer and then it was further reduced to Rs 1 per kg. Naveen is credited to have the other popular schemes like Mo Kudia, Biju Krushak Kalyan, Biju Gram Jyoti, Madhu Babu Pension, Biju Pucca Ghar, Biju KBK, Biju Kanya Ratna, UNNATI, ABADHA, BASUDHA etc. He has been able to connect to the rural people at large through these popular schemes along with the distribution of blankets, umbrella, cycles etc.
The son of the soil, the visionary leader Biju Babu named his house as ‘Naveen Niwas’ which is the residence of Naveen Babu and the epicenter of BJD politics. He has been successful in weakening the opposition by his political acumen.
Tears from his eyes after the Naxal attack in Nayagarh in 2008 where 15 personnel were killed or ‘zero casualty’ target during Cyclone Hudhud or meeting Jaga Kalia in Delhi AIIMS reflects his personality. As known as a tough taskmaster, he has successfully managed to control the bureaucracy and transformed it into a machine for the development of the state.
His clean image is the biggest asset for his party BJD to win the subsequent elections. None can able to decode his winning strategy even the leaders of his close coterie. He always plays his card to his chest. He is not a media-savvy but people love to see and listen to him. He doesn’t know Odia but rules in the hearts of the Odias.
Mr. Naveen Patnaik, the BJD boss, Odisha strongman and a powerful regional satrap has emerged as one of India’s most successful Chief Ministers as he begins his record fourth consecutive innings. In spite of tsu’namo’, BJD won 20 Lok Sabha seats out of 21 and 117 assembly seats out of 147. Yes, it’s only NaPa magic that worked in Odisha in 2014.
He is a proven mass leader being trusted by people. He will remain in the hearts of the people for his simplicity, honesty, giving a stable government for two decades and bringing the various schemes to have a balance in socioeconomic front. The transformation of an author of 4 books to 4 times Chief Minister and a political novice to the most powerful leader is not only impressive but also quite remarkable.
-Amarendra Mohanty, MCA, MBA (Operation), PGCBM, PMP, Six Sigma Black Belt, ITIL, CSM
IT Professional, Research Scholar & Social Worker. +91 9791045053, @AmarendraM
AT- Nahanga, PO- Jhadeswarpur, Mahanga, Cuttack