Odisha Chief Minister and Biju Janata Dal (BJD) president Naveen Patnaik on Friday (May 24) retained his home turf Hinjli for a fifth consecutive term, trouncing nearest rival and BJP nominee Pitambar Acharya from the assembly seat by 60,160 votes, according to EC sources.
The BJD supremo, who is steering his party to another emphatic victory in the state, has also established a lead of 56,000 votes in Bijepur constituency in west Odisha against Sanat Kumar Gartia of the saffron party. The ruling BJD is all set to form government for a fifth time in a row, with its candidates winning 89 seats and leading in 23 others out of the 146 assembly segments, the EC sources said.
This is for the first time Patnaik contested the assembly election from two seats. The chief minister has been representing Hinjili in Ganjam district since 2000, when he decided to confine himself to state politics having served as a Union minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led government. In 2014 assembly elections, the BJD chief had bagged Hinjili, defeating his rival Sibaram Patra of the Congress by a margin of 76,586 votes. Patnaik had secured 73.14 per cent of the total votes polled.