For last two days, an obsessive clamour is heard from the saffron camp over chief minister Naveen Patnaik’s choice to leave the Bijepur assembly and retain Hinjli. Patnaik in the last assembly polls, had contested simultaneously from both the above seats and had won both.
Whether Patnaik leaves Bijepur or leave Hinjli, that is the latter’s prerogative and there is no such political code of ethics to weigh on any leader in question. He or she can make their choice the way it suits.
Bijepur in Bargarh district was a traditional Congress bastion which, after the death of the sitting Congress MLA, Subal Sahu had fallen vacant in August 22 in 2017. Subsequently, Sahu’s widow, Rita Sahu, contested in the by-poll in a BJD ticket and won it.
The question that has today pitchforked itself to limelight is, why Patnaik is leaving the Bijepur seat, which according to the Bharatiya Janata Party, is a kind of ‘betrayal’ being done with the people of that area who had reposed their faith on the chief minister.
Neither there could have been any logic had Patnaik chosen to leave Hinjli in favour of Bijepur. Even the people of Bijepur, perhaps, were aware of such an eventuality and after Patnaik’s decision to leave Bijepur for another by-poll has not elicited any notes of anger from Bijepur.
All that is audible are in the television studios where even some experts those who have not visited Bijepur keep sermonising on the hurt sentiments of Bijepur voters.
The Prime Minister Narendra Modi too had contested from two Lok Sabha seats in 2014 but he had to abandon one and keep Varanasi. No heckles were raised then neither from the opposition nor by the BJP itself.