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regular-article-logo Monday, 24 June 2024

Biju Janata Dal MP Anubhav Mohanty not on campaigner list

Election to the Brajaraj Nagar in Jharsuguda district in western Odisha seat was necessitated following the death of the BJD’s MLA Kishore Kumar Mohanty

Our Correspondent Bhubaneswar Published 18.05.22, 03:37 AM
Anubhav Mohanty.

Anubhav Mohanty. File photo

Kendrapara’s Biju Janata Dal MP and Odisha’s popular film star Anubhav Mohanty, who defeated chief minister Naveen Patnaik’s friend-turned-foe Baijayant aka Jay Panda in the last Lok Sabha elections, seems to have fallen out of favour.

His name has not been included in the star campaigners list of the BJD for campaigning for the party’s candidate in the upcoming Brajaraj Nagar byelection scheduled to be held on May 31.

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Election to the Brajaraj Nagar in Jharsuguda district in western Odisha seat was necessitated following the death of the BJD’s MLA Kishore Kumar Mohanty. The BJD has made Kishore’s wife Alaka its candidate from the seat.

Anubhav had defeated BJP’s Jay Panda in the 2019 general election from the prestigious Kendrapara seat with a convincing margin. Naveen himself took charge of the Kendrapara campaign and ensured that Anubhav wins the seat. Prior to joining the BJP, Panda was in the BJD and a close aide of Naveen.

Though Naveen has not included Anubhav’ s name in the list of star campaigners for the Brajaraj Nagar Assembly byelection, he has placed other Odia film stars — Akasha Das Nayak (MLA) and Arindam Roy — in the list of 40 star campaigners. Naveen is himself heading the campaign team.

Prior to being elected as Lok Sabha member from the Kendrapara Lok Sabha seat in 2019, Anubhav was sent to the Rajya Sabha on BJD’s ticket for his hard work during the 2014 general election.

Sources said Anubhav’s public spat with his estranged wife Varsha Priyadarshini (a popular odia film star), the ongoing divorce case and domestic abuse cases, has not gone down well with the BJD leadership.

“Our leader is very touchy about all these issues and lays stress on maintaining a clean public life. If he feels any one’s personal life is denting the image of the party, he stays away from him. Perhaps that’s the reason why Anubhav’s name has not been included in the list of star campaigners. It’s also a tactical move to deprive the opposition of the opportunity of targeting the party and Anubhav himself on the issue of harassment of women. On this same ground, his name had not been included in the name of star campaigner in other byelections also,” said a senior BJD leader.

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