Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Dec 28:

Eyes on upcoming panchayat polls, Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) President Prasad Harichandan today criticized BJP and Biju Janata Dal over the demonetisation issue and accused both parties to have stashed large stacks of black money to influence the polls.

Prasad press meet-congress

Speaking to reports after attending the Foundation Day function of Congress, Harichandan said, “Both BJP and BJD have stashed large amounts of black money to spend in panchayat polls. They have done their tricks to convert black money to white.”

“People may not have any money, but BJP and BJD have a lot of black money — which they will use to buy votes. However, people are aware of their motive. They will discredit these parties in the polls. Meanwhile, Congress will hit the campaign with the strength of its supporters,” he asserted.

Reacting to the allegations, BJP leader Dharmendra Pradhan said that the party has panicked because of Center’s crackdown on black money.

“If there is anyone who is most afraid (after demonitisation), it has to be the Gandhi family. That is the reason, Congress is scared of the fight against black money launched by the Prime Minister. It is only natural for them,” said Pradhan.

BJD Spokesperson Amar Prasad Satpathy, on the other hand, called Prasad’s statement his party’s excuse for the impending defeat in the polls.

“First, they should get their house in order. They know that they are not going to do well in the panchayat polls. That is why they have started peddling excuses,” said Satpathy who also emphasized that the support of the public lies with his party.