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BJD’s clean sweep in Orissa

Prafulla Das

BJP comes a cropper in Lok Sabha elections

— PHOTO: ASHOKE CHAKRABARTY

Biju Janata Dal activists are in a jubilant mood at the Bhubaneswar party office on Saturday after the party’s massive victory in the elections.

BHUBANESWAR: It was Naveen Patnaik all the way in Orissa on Saturday when the Biju Janata Dal swept both the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections in the State.

Mr. Patnaik had severed his party’s ties with the Bharatiya Janata Party a few weeks before the elections.

When last reports came in, the BJD won 103 of the 129 seats it contested in the 147-member Assembly. The party also won 14 of the total 21 Lok Sabha seats in the State.

The Congress improved its performance in the Lok Sabha polls by winning six seats. But it put up a poor show in the Assembly polls, winning only 26 seats.

The CPI won the remaining Lok Sabha seat.

The BJP, which had fielded its candidates in all the Lok Sabha and Assembly seats after the BJD severed ties with it before the elections, was routed in the simultaneous polls. Almost all the top leaders of the party failed to win. The party managed to win six Assembly seats, including two in riot-hit Kandhamal.

Of the 145 Assembly election results declared, the the NCP won 4, the CPI 1 and others 5. The party had won 32 Assembly seats and seven Lok Sabha seats in the 2004 elections.

The two Assembly seats which the BJP won in Kandhamal were G. Udayagiri and Baliguda. The party’s nominee for G. Udayagiri seat, Manoj Pradhan, one of the prime accused in the anti-Christian riot cases, won the election from behind the bars.

He is presently in judicial custody.

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