The last minute postponement of today’s much awaited joint press conference by Odisha PCC chief Jaydeb Jena and his predecessor Niranjan Patnaik at the Congress Bhawan has come as a let down for the party workers who were looking forward to a ‘patch up’ between the two leaders.
Explaining the reason for the postponement, Jena told media persons attending his solo show this morning that the proposed joint press conference on the industrial scene in the state could not materialise because of the circumstances following the unfortunate death of the 14 year old girl from Mahakalpada who was set afire after being gang raped last month. The girl’s death at the Capital hospital on Thursday night had led to angry protests in the city and public outrage across the state.
“We thought it proper to postpone the briefing on the industrial scene in Odisha and focus instead on the Mahakalpada girl’s issue”, Jena said.
Jena demanded the resignation of both the chief minister and the health minister for the state government’s failure to provide proper medical care to the victim and also for the shabby treatment meted out to her family.
While Jena chose to address the media in the Congress Bhawan, Niranjan Patnaik left for Mahakalpada to console the bereaved family of the victim.
“I think the party would have sent a better message across to the people, had the PCC chief cancelled today’s press conference and gone to Mahakalpada along with the former PCC chief “, a senior Congress leader said.
Many in the Congress who were relieved to see Jena and Patnaik in a tight embrace during an Iftaar get together in Cuttack a couple of days ago may have to wait a little longer to see if Jena and Patnaik can really bury the hatchet and say cheese.