OdishaPlus Bureau

Although BJP has done fairly well in Odisha compared to 2014 Lok Sabha results, the debacle of Baijayant (Jay) Panda in Kendrapara parliamentary constituency has created  a havoc in the BJP camp and forecasts  the party’s gloomy future in this eastern state of India.

Baijayant popularly known as Jay Panda in Delhi’s political circles and corridors of Parliament was also the blue- eyed boy of BJD Supremo Naveen Patnaik for three decades. Baijayant’s father Late Bansidhar Panda, the industrial doyen of Odisha, was a close friend of Biju Patnaik   in the early sixties.

Bansidhar flew back to Odisha leaving his glorious career abroad to work for and from Odisha. Baijayant’s family and business were all in safe hands under the Naveen clout. The opposition had time and again alleged BJD government’s unfair leaning in protecting Jay’s home industry.

Baijayant’s fate upturned with his hidden support shown for ‘Narendra Modi’ and his apparently visible criticism against the third floor personified in his words as a ‘Non Odia Bureaucrat’. Baijayant was not only removed from BJD’s primary membership. Jay was literally out of favor from the political and quasi political circles.

Baijayant was too late in declaring his political ambition. He organized small tea parties under the banner ‘Hei Jau’ (Let it Go) in some focus points of Odisha. He joined BJP just before elections with a grand welcome and became party’s National Vice President. PM Narendra Modi also campaigned for him in Kendrapara. Baijayant was trailing behind his opponent, cine actor Anubhav Mohanty with a margin above one lakh votes till the last round of counting.

In a tweet days before counting, Baijayant expressed his confidence of winning for the good work he has done in Kendrapara. All his claims were reversed when Naveen appealed to voters not to vote Baijayant.Naveen cautioned the Kendrapara voters against Baijayant’s selfish interests.

Baijayant’s disastrous defeat and BJP’s defeat in Odisha polls tell  just one thing :  minus Naveen nothing works in Odisha politics