Khariar MLA Adhiraj Panigrahi Joins BJD After Quitting Congress Ahead Of Polls In Odisha

Bhubaneswar: A day after quitting Congress, sitting MLA from Khariar Adhiraj Mohan Panigrahi joined the ruling BJD at Sankha Bhawan in Bhubaneswar on Wednesday.

Panigrahi joined the Conch party in the presence of several senior leaders, including Pranab Prakash Das, Snehangini Chhuria and Manas Mangaraj.

His induction is being seen as an attempt by the BJD to checkmate the BJP, which is said to have a strong base in Khariar, a constituency in western Odisha.

On Tuesday, the Khariar MLA attributed his decision to resign from the primary membership of the Congress to the present political scenario in the state, organisational weakness of the party and feedback of the people from his constituency. “People of Khariar wanted me to quit as they believed that I would not be to drive development in Khariar while remaining in Congress,” he stated.

Panigrahi, a first-time MLA, added that he had no issue with the party leadership.

In the 2019 elections, Panigrahi had won the seat by defeating BJD’s Lambodar Nial by a slender margin of 2,857 votes. The seat was earlier held by BJP’s Duryodhan Majhi. Panigrahi had finished second in 2014 elections.


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