Jatni: With parliamentary and assembly polls nearing in Odisha, all parties are busy finalising list of candidates. Parties like OJM and BJP have announced their initial list of candidates. As it is known from sources, ruling party BJD has started its work to finalise the list. It’s expected that Naveen may bring in more fresh faces this time and fuse many leaders who aspire to get a ticket from the party. As rumoured, BJD is to field a journo for Jatni assembly seat.
The existing MLA Bibhuti Balabantaray has more chances of being dropped from BJD candidate list for his closeness with Pyari Mohan Mohapatra and involvement in the alleged midnight operation to dethrone the Naveen Patnaik government. Distance from people during last five years has also decreased popularity of Balabantaray.
The other possibility was Sangram Routray, former youth congress leader who left the party before the last municipal elections and formed his Jai Jatni group. it was expected that Sangram’s Jai Jatni would merge with BJD after the lections which didn’t happen. Sangram too do not have a good rapport in rural Jatni.
Sarat Paikray, the former BJD MLA who fought the last election as independent candidate, may not be taken back for his open dissidence during 2009 elections.
The party scouts for a fresh face to field as candidate for Jatni Assembly seat. As of now, name of a Journo, Ardhendu Das, is in discussion as possible candidate from BJD for Jatni.
Das, a journalist since last two decades, has good organisation in Jatni – both in Municipality and the Block. Involved in various social activities, Das maintains good relationship with various social institutions and civil society bodies. His family is also known to be a supporter of ruling party BJD because a woman of Das’ family, Amita Das, has remained Chairperson of Jatni Block during 2003-2007 period.
Winner in the race for a BJD ticket for the constituency will be clear only after announcement of the final list.