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Odisha polls: From Congress to BJD and back to Congress in 12 hours!

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Odisha Sun Times Bureau

Bhubaneswar, Mar 27:

Arun Dey joined the BJD on March 15 and ‘severed’ all relations with the party on March 25 – lasting all of 11 days in the ruling party. But that seems ages when you consider what a local Congress leader of Kashinagar area in Gajapati district did yesterday.

Bipin Raita, the Congress leader from Garaba village in Partada panchayat, left the party and joined the BJD on Wednesday morning and was back in the party that he had left in the morning – hold your breath – by evening the same day!

Senior BJD leader Chitri Simadri announced the entry of Raita, along with a few others of his village, at the residence of Paralakhemundi MLA K Narayan Rao amid great fanfare on Wednesday morning. The newly inducted members, led by Raita, duly pledged their support for Rao and promised to work whole heartedly for him in the coming election.

What exactly transpired in the period since the morning is not known. But by evening, Raita announced, at the Paralakhemundi Congress office, that he had come back ‘home’. For the second time in the day, Raita pledged his support – but this time for Congress candidate K Surya Rao!

Raita even had a ready explanation for his double volte face. “Some people lured and misguided me to join the BJD,” said the born again Congressman.

Now what exact bait was used to ‘lure’ him to the BJD and then back again to Congress within 12 hours is something that would remain, for reasons that are all too obvious, a mystery.