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Naveen Patnaik, a master at handling catastrophic cyclones, wards off Narendra Modi storm; begins fresh term in Odisha
TIWN
Naveen Patnaik, a master at handling catastrophic cyclones, wards off Narendra Modi storm; begins fresh term in Odisha
PHOTO : TIWN

New Delhi, May 29 (TIWN): Despite best efforts by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to conquer Odisha by setting up a target of winning 120 seats out of 147 Assembly segments, the party ended up with just 23 seats in 2019 increasing its tally from 10 in 2014.

There was a direct fight between Naveen Patnaik-led Biju Janata Dal and BJP in 104 seats where the candidates from the saffron party stood second in at least 81. The party's parliamentary representation from the state rose up from one in 2014 to eight in 2019 out of the total 21. The lone BJP Lok Sabha MP in 2014 was Union minister Juel Oram who had won from Sundergarh. The BJD lost eight seats this time. It had 20 MPs last time.

Oram managed to retain his seat in the latest round of Lok Sabha election. The other prominent winners for BJP are IAS-turned-politician Aparajita Sarangi from Bhubaneswar and party's national secretary in charge of West Bengal Suresh Pujari from Bargarh and its state president Basanta Panda. But to the utter dismay of the party, national vice-president-cum-spokesman Baijayanta 'Jay ' Panda who contested from Kendrapara (a four-time BJD MP who joined BJP after falling out with Naveen Patnaik just before the general elections) and another national spokesman Sambit Patra from Puri lost their elections. The BJP claimed that its vote share almost doubled in comparison to 2014. While it secured 91, 29,773 votes i.e. 38.5 percent of total votes polled in 2019, it had got 49.99 lakh votes in 2014 which was equivalent to 21 percent).

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