Giriraj Singh Hails Dharamendra Pradhan As Vikas Purush, Claims Naveen Patnaik Held Captive

Sambalpur: Amid the BJP’s poll blitzkrieg in Odisha, Union Minister Giriraj Singh on Wednesday alleged that Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is under house arrest and the state is run by mafia.

While conducting a roadshow from Bhutapada to Sunapali in Odisha’s Sambalpur, he said that the CM is only making short appearances and then disappearing. “He (Naveen) comes, speaks for two minutes and then goes back. He has been kidnapped and being held captive,” he alleged.

Singh also reminded Naveen of his pledge to leave the CM chair once he reaches 75 years of age. “Naveen babu had told 20-25 years ago that he would call it quits once he is 75. He is 77 now and is planning to make V K Pandian the next CM of Odisha. I would, therefore, like to urge the people of Odisha to vote for BJP to preserve Odia Asmita and ensure that a son/daughter of the soil takes charge of the state,” he said.

The Union Minister claimed that the BJD is bereft of leaders. “Naveen babu only has Pandian and Bobby (Pranab Prakash Das).”

He also came down heavily on the BJD government, accusing it of stopping Hanuman Jayanti celebrations in Sambalpur. “We cannot celebrate Hanuman Jayanti here. Where will we celebrate it then–Pakistan, Bangladesh or Malaysia?,” he asked, while cautioning people of Sambalpur about increase in Rohingya refugees in the district.

He further alleged that the Naveen Patnaik-led government has looted Rs 25,000 crore sanctioned to the state under MNREGA  and accused it of renaming the Centre’s SHGs scheme as Mission Shakti in the state.

Hailing Dharmendra Pradhan, who is the BJP MP candidate for Sambalpur, as a Vikas Purush, the Union Minister asserted that the saffron party will win the Lok Sabha as well as Vidhan Sabha seats here. “The wave of change is evident in Odisha and the BJP will form the next government here,” he added.

Sambalpur is going to polls on Saturday May 25. Dharmendra is pitted against Congress’ Nagendra Kumar Pradhan and BJD’s Pranab Prakash Das here.

No comments could be obtained from the BJD leaders over the allegations of the Union Minister.

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