Reported by Chinmaya Dehury
Bhubaneswar, Feb 18:
With elections, both to the Lok Sabha and the Assembly, due in the next few weeks, the ‘conch’ is all set to blare full throttle.
The ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) will launch a statewide, 13-day long ‘Sankha Bajao, Swabhimaan Banchao’ campaign on February 20, senior BJD leader Kalpataru Das announced at a press conference here on Tuesday.
“The campaign, to be launched by BJD president and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik from Hinjlikatu, his Assembly constituency, will highlight the welfare programmes of the state government, besides raising the issue of gross negligence to Odisha by the Central government,” Das said.
A massive membership drive will also be carried out during the campaign, which would end on March 5, he said.
“We are expecting to add five lakh more to the nearly 35 lakh who are already members of the party by the end of the campaign,” the BJD vice president said.
The party will also hold three mega congregations on March 5, the birth anniversary of the legendary Biju Patnaik after whom the party is named, the newly elected Rajya Sabha member said.
“The party has decided to hold three congregations in three different places in the state on the occasion of Biju Patnaik’s birth anniversary. While a youth congregation will be held in Bhubaneswar, a women’s congregation will be held in Berhampur. A convention of farmers, Kendu leaf pluckers and construction workers will be organized at Sambalpur,” said the Panchayati Raj Minister Kalpataru Das, who was flanked by party vice-president and Finance Minister Prasanna Acharya and women’s wing president Pramila Mallick.
All the meetings will be attended by party supremo and chief minister Naveen Patnaik, Das said.