BHUBANESWAR: A day after the egg pelting on Kendrapara Lok Sabha member Baijayant Jay Panda during a visit to Jatiparilo village under Mahanga to inaugurate an overhead water tank, Odisha Chief Minister and BJD president Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday ordered the party’s Cuttack observer to look into the case amid political mudslinging.
Mr Patnaik, who had maintained silence for long said his party was against any form of violence and always disapproved acts of indiscipline. “Our party is against violence and any form of discipline. I have asked the Cuttack observer to look into the matter,” the CM told reporters.
Health minister and Mahanga legislator Pratap Jena, however, reasoned simmering ‘public discontent’ behind the attack on the BJD MP. “Mr Panda’s recent media statements on organisational affairs and the state government have affected the party and upset supporters not only in my constituency Mahanga but across the state. Some locals told me that outsiders came to Mahanga in 10 vehicles along with the MP and they misbehaved with the villagers which led to violence,” Mr Jena said, adding that he was in Shirdi when the incident happened.
“After I returned, I was saddened to know about the incident. However, it should be introspected why was the MP attacked and whether the situation could have been avoided." On Baijayant’s decision to go to the place to inaugurate the project despite indicative signs of protest in the form of destruction of the plaque a day earlier, the minister said, "The MP was aware of some problems brewing. People’s representatives should not have stubborn attitude and discuss their unhappiness so that such incidents do not recur."
Adding fuel to the BJD fire, Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Wednesday said the attack on Mr Panda was carried out at the instruction of Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik. "But the BJD has been shocked with the panchayat polls and not able to digest the results. Instead of taking healthy criticism in stride, the party instruments physical attack which is undemocratic and condemnable. More so, when the chief minister has directed the attack to be carried out, how do you expect him to take action?" he questioned....