Berhampur MLA Bikram Panda Likely To Be Named As BJD Candidate From Odisha’s Gopalpur

Bhubaneswar: Berhampur MLA Bikram Panda likely to be the party nominee for Gopalpur constituency in Ganjam district, BJD president Ramesh Chandra Choupatnaik told journalists on Friday.

“Panda has been assigned organisational responsibility by party supremo Naveen Patnaik and is likely to be the party candidate from Gopalpur,” he said.

Choupatnaik, however, refrained from making any comments on whether BJD would field him from Berhampur. He was elected from this assembly constituency in 1995 and 2004.

With Assembly elections barely months away, the spotlight is on the contentious Gopalpur assembly segment, which has been witnessing power struggle after the expulsion of the sitting MLA, Pradeep Panigrahi, who was once close to Naveen.

Panigrahi was expelled from BJD in 2020 on allegations doing anti-people activities.

Though the BJD secured success in the last panchayat polls despite factional divides under the leadership of retired bureaucrat Gopobandhu Dash, political advisor to CM, he later withdrew, and Panda assumed charge.

Panigrahi, on the other hand, has expressed his intent to contest from Gopalpur, but his party affiliation remains unconfirmed. There were rumours in January that he might join the BJP.


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