Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Chitrakonda, Mar 30:
Odisha Chief Minister and BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik is not exactly known for public display of emotions. That is why many eyebrows were raised when the normally stoic Chief Minister was seen wiping tears rolling down his cheeks with a handkerchief while speaking at an election rally at Mathili under Chitrakonda assembly constituency in Maoist-prone Malkangiri district on Sunday.
Ironically, the tears started rolling down just as he was repeating, for the umpteenth time in the last few days, his charge of shedding ‘crocodile tears’ against the Congress and the BJP
“Where were the BJP and the Congress when the state was ravaged by cyclone Phailin? They are shedding crocodile tears. I am with you and shall serve you till my death,” the BJD boss said in what has by now become his standard line in every election speech.
The Chief Minister’s unexpected theatrics led someone in the crowd to quip; “It is actually he himself who is shedding crocodile tears.”
The only other time one can recall Naveen Patnaik crying was after the Nayagarh massacre by the Maoists back in 2008. But while that show of emotion was perfectly understandable given the sombre occasion, an election meeting was hardly the kind of occasion where one would expect the Chief Minister to make a public spectacle of himself by wiping tears off his cheeks.
It is entirely possible though that the actual reason was more mundane and the Chief Minister wiped his tears for nothing more profound than the fact that something got into his eyes while speaking!