"Odisha Congress is correcting its mistakes"

Party's state chief Jayadev Jena questions Naveen’s development claims

ajay

Ajay Singh | April 4, 2014




Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee president Jayadev Jena is a harried man these days. He is assigned the task of revitalsing his party which is not keen to revive and recover. On Friday he came out with a manifesto full of usual rhetoric and platitudes in a function held at the PCC headquarters. In a brief conversation, he, like a hardboiled politician that he is, displayed his never-say-die spirit:

Q: You seem to have given up much before the fight. Your party is hardly in the fray.
A: This is incorrect. We are in the fray all over the state. You may find the influence of Naveen Patnaik but in rural areas the Congress is quite strong. We are mobilising support and let me say that 15-year anti-incumbency would be Naveen's undoing.

Q: But don’t you think your party makes a poor impression when your leader of opposition Bhupinder Singh deserts it and joins the BJD?
A: Bhupinder Singh was always hand in glove with Naveen Patnaik. For the past several years, he had been acting like a BJD man in the Congress. It is good that the party is purged of such people. Moreover, he does not have much influence.

Q: Then why did you retain such a man as the leader of opposition in Odisha?
A:
That is a mistake we made. But now we are quick to realise it and make course correction.

Q: Naveen Patnaik appears to be very popular. How will you counter him?
A:
This is a wrong impression. He is the most hated person because of his arrogant style of functioning and his government's involvement in corruption cases worth over Rs 1 lakh crore. His government is involved in a mining scam worth over Rs 60,000 crore while chit fund scams are also running into nearly Rs 20,000 crore. There are many other scams in which his regime's involvement is evident.

Q: But in the past 15 years, the state has prospered in terms of infrastructure development. How will you counter that argument?
A:
This is the prosperity of a few top industrialists and people close to the regime. In reality, Odisha is impoverished more than ever. The state government scheme of providing rice at Re 1 per kg [this is a central scheme] has ruined work culture and agriculture in the state. Education and health care have become inaccessible to a large section of people. These are not signs of development.

Q: What are your handicaps?
A:
We are not able to match money power of Naveen Patnaik.

Q: Why? You have a government at the centre that has been accused of even bigger scams. You ruled Odisha for decades in the past.
A:
(With a sheepish smile) No, we do not have resources. Let me tell you that we still have not given a penny to candidates; they are fighting on their own.

Q: Are you optimist?
A:
Of course, I am. We will ensure that deposits of Naveen's candidates are forfeited in most of the seats this time.

Comments

 

Other News

Nitish Kumar is back as Bihar CM – yet again

JD (U) leader Nitish Kumar was sworn-in as the chief minister of Bihar for the sixth time on Thursday after again striking an alliance with the BJP, barely hours after tendering his resignation as he parted ways with the RJD. And all this happened in less than 24 hours.   BJP

No clear distinction between professionals and amateurs in classical dance: Malavika Sarukkai

Malavika Sarrukkai is a Bharatanatyam dancer from Tamil Nadu. She began learning the dance form at the age of seven and made her stage debut at the age of 12. She was awarded the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award in 2002 and Padma Shri in 2003. Her work features in a government-commissioned documentary calle

Has Nitish played politics of opportunism?

Has Nitish played politics of opportunism?

Nitish Kumar quits as Bihar CM

Nitish Kumar resigned as chief minister of Bihar on Wednesday, just hours after RJD chief Lalu Prasad ruled out his son and deputy chief minister Tejashwi Yadav putting in his papers following a case being registered by the CBI. The JD(U) and RJD alliance had been under considerable strain o

Will the needy get homes under PMAY?

 The Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY), introduced in June 2015, aims at providing every family with “a pucca house with water connection, toilet facilities, 24x7 electricity supply” by the time the nation completes 75 years of its Independence in 2022.   The Yoj

No longer a walk in the park for bureaucrats

Continuing as a bureaucrat just got a lot tougher with the government weeding out the incompetent and taking action against 381 civil services officers, including 24 who were from the Indian Administrative Service.   The Narendra Modi government’s action against civil s





Video

Hurriyat leaders funding terrorists- NIA

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter