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regular-article-logo Thursday, 18 July 2024

Former Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik to assume role of leader of Opposition in state Assembly

Naveen was the uninterrupted chief minister of the state for 24 years before being ousted from power in the last election after his party received a shock defeat

Subhashish Mohanty Bhubaneswar Published 20.06.24, 06:04 AM
Naveen Patnaik

Naveen Patnaik File picture

The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) president and former Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik is poised to assume the role of the leader of the Opposition in the state Assembly.

Patnaik was elected as the BJD legislature party leader on Wednesday.

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Naveen was the uninterrupted chief minister of the state for 24 years before being ousted from power in the last election after his party received a shock defeat.

Naveen said: “We have just had a meeting of the BJD MLAs who have been elected in the recent Assembly polls. I have congratulated them. They have elected me as the leader of the Opposition and leader of the BJD legislature party.”

Naveen also said he had discussed many matters with the newly elected MLAs of the party.

Senior BJD leader and Rairakhol MLA Prasanna Acharya was elected deputy leader of the BJD legislature party. Aul MLA Pratap Keshari Deb will act as the party’s deputy chief whip and former Speaker and Binjhapur MLA Pramila Mallick will be the chief whip of the party.

The BJD has a strength of 51 MLAs against the BJP’s 78 MLAs in the state Assembly. The BJD was also completely routed in the Lok Sabha election and could not win a single seat out of 21. Its tally in the Assembly election was reduced from 113 seats in 2019 to 51 in 2024. On the other hand, the BJP improved its tally from eight to 20 in the Lok Sabha and won 78 Assembly seats.

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