Odisha by-poll: Prestige fight for BJD; BJP going all out to wrest Padampur seat

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After the BJD tasted its first bypoll defeat since 2009 earlier this month, the December 5 by-election to the Padampur assembly seat in Odisha has become a prestige issue for the ruling party which is going all out to retain the constituency.

Buoyed by the win in the Dhamnagar bypoll on November 6, the BJP is also leaving no stone unturned to wrest the rural constituency from the party led by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.

The Congress is also optimistic to turn the tables this time and attacking both the saffron party and the BJD over farmers issues.

In a bid to woo voters, all three major parties, during the ongoing campaign, are highlighting the issues faced by farmers of Padampur where 82 per cent of the residents belong to the agrarian community.

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Inadequate minimum support price, low wage of kendu leaf pluckers, mismanagement in paddy procurement, and delay in crop insurance claim settlement and input subsidy payment for drought-hit farmers are among the farmers issues.

Politicians are also harping on the issues such as the demand for a separate Padampur district carving out of the existing Bargarh and migration of local youths are also took the centre stage in the campaign.

Accusing the Centre of neglecting the demand of Odisha people, the ruling party raked up the shelved Bargarh-Nuapada via Padampur railway project to target the BJP, while the saffron camp alleged that the proposed scheme could not be implemented due to “non-cooperation” of the Naveen Patnaik government.

This particular by-election is extremely important for us as we have recently lost the by-poll in the coastal Dhamnagar segment. The party cannot afford another defeat before the 2024 general elections, a senior BJD leader told


(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Federal staff and is auto-published from a syndicated feed.)

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