Wednesday, March 12, 2014

BJD names candidates for five Lok Sabha, 30 assembly seats

Business Standard, March 12, 2014
The Biju Janata Dal () today announced first list of candidates for upcoming  and assembly  with some new faces emerging in the list chosen by the party leadership.
A total of 5 candidates have been named for contesting Lok Sabha seats while 30 candidates have been put up by the party for assembly polls.
The Lok Sabha candidates are former national hockey team captain Dillip Tirkey (Sundargarh), Ladukishore Swain (Aska), film actor Sidhanta Mohapatra (Berhampur), Arkakeshari Deo (Kalahandi) and Kalikesh Singhdeo (Balangir). Out of five names, three candidates of Sundergarh, Aska and Kalahandi will fight for the first time from BJD ticket.
The announcement of candidate for Kalahandi seat by BJD has put all the speculation to rest as it was touted that Bhupinder Singh, the former Leader of Opposition and Congress leader who recently joined BJD, might get the party ticket. Singh, has however, earlier said that he had no desire to contest the polls.
In the list of 30 assembly seats, comprising some districts of western and southern Odisha, the BJD has named eight candidates who for the first time will fight on behalf of the party while one candidate (Jogendra Behera), has been assigned to fight from Loisingha seat instead of his previous contesting place Titlagarh.
Interestingly, the party has retained the candidature of Rourkela MLA Sarada Nayak, who was expelled from state council of ministers in 2012 for his alleged involvement in the failed coup bid hatched by Rajya Sabha MP Pyari Mohan Mohapatra. In the first phase of election to be held on April 10, contests will be held for 10 Lok Sabha seat and 77 assembly seats. The BJD said it will announce list of other places very soon.
"In the last few days, we have received more than 5, 000 applications seeking candidature of the BJD from every nook and corner of the state. I am humbled by the confidence they have reposed in the BJD and Biju ideology. I personally thank each one of them. I am confident they will continue to support the party and work for a self reliant and prosperous state," party president and Chief Minister  said while announcing list at his residence today.
Sources said the ruling party is still undecided about naming candidates for many places as several party insiders and newcomers from other parties are jostling for candidature. It is even undecided about its talks of seat sharing with Jharkhand Mukti Morcha () for Sundargarh and Mayurbhanj districts, as announced earlier this week.
"The talks (with JMM) are still on. Let's see what happened," said Kalpataru Das, BJD vice president today.

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