Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Feb 6:
With political parties in the state vying for credit for the refinery project in Paradip, the poster war in the Odisha capital turned ugly as black paint was smeared on the posters of Prime Minister Narendra Modi ahead of his visit to state.
The posters of Prime Minister Narendra Modi put up along the Raj Bhawan Square to AG Square were painted black late last night hours after Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s posters were torn and grounded.
The saffron party leaders blame it on their opponents and condemned the incident.
While ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) are on a poster blitz ahead of Prime Minister’s visit for the inauguration of the IOCL refinery in Paradip, the political parties are entangled in a war of words to hijack the credit for the successful completion of the project.
“Prime Minister is not of any party. The foundation stone for the project was laid in 2004 when Atal Behari Bajpayee was the prime minister. The project did not take off when the UPA government was in power. The work was expedited after Narendra Modi became prime minister. PM will dedicate this to the nation tomorrow. It is a matter of pride for all of us. But, the parties are engaged in mud slinging to take credit for it. I feel they are insulting the Odias and tarnishing the image of Odisha before countrymen,” senior BJP leader Suresh Pujari said.
Following the late night operation, the BJD workers filed FIRs with Capital and Saheed Nagar police stations yesterday.
“This is very unfortunate. Whether the workers of BJD or BJP have done this, we should rise above party politics and need to introspect. Like Prime Minister is the PM of the nation and not only the leader of BJP, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is not only the party supremo but also the chief minister of the state. They hold distinguished positions. BJD doesn’t indulge in poster war or poster politics. Some parties are trying to create political intolerance,” BJD leader Dibyashankar Mishra said.
Claiming the major chunk of the credit, the Congress condemned the incident.
“The poster war on television, newspapers and hoardings between BJD and BJP was somewhat alright. But, tearing and smearing of posters ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit is regrettable. Odisha is a peaceful state and Congress party condemns whosover is behind such act. The major credit should go to Congress for the refinery project,” former Nabarangpur MP and Congress leader Pradeep Majhi said.