BJD workers celebrate party’s unprecedented victory

The ruling Biju Janata Dal managed to strengthen its position in western Odisha by securing majority in as many as 15 of the 20 urban local bodies when results of the Friday’s polls were declared on Saturday.

Opposition Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party ended up securing majority in one ULB each.

While Congress won majority in Barpali notified area council in Bargarh district, BJP managed to secure majority in Patnagarh notified area council in Bolangir district. No party secured majority in the remaining three ULBs.

The BJD won in 197 of the total 306 wards spread across 20 ULBs in nine districts in the western region. Congress won in 56 wards and BJP won in 35.

The remaining 18 wards were won by Independents and others.

In the last civic polls held in these 20 ULBs in the nine western Odisha districts in 2008, BJD had bagged only 84 wards, while Congress had registered victory in 104 wards and BJP had won in 82 wards. Independents and others had secured 34 seats in 2008.

A total of 1,102 candidates were in the fray for the post of Councillors in 301 wards in the 20 ULBs in this election. While the BJD had fielded candidates in all the 306 wards, the BJP had its candidates in 268 wards and Congress in 240.

The Congress and BJP had failed to field candidates in all seats in view of the ‘no court, no vote’ call given by the agitating lawyers, who had been demanding establishment of a permanent Bench of the High Court in western Odisha since long.

Although all the three major parties supported the agitation by the lawyers, the BJD was able to take benefit of the situation after the State government wrote to the Centre recommending establishment of a permanent Bench of the High Court in western Odisha.

As soon as the results of the polls were announced, there was celebration in all the ULBs where the BJD won majority of seats. Victory processions were taken out in most of the places where the BJD was able to oust Congress and BJP out of power.

The BJD workers also celebrated the party’s unprecedented victory by dancing to the beat of the drum at the party’s headquarters in the Capital city.

Top leaders of the three parties reacted on expected lines. While the Congress and BJP respected the verdict and blamed the BJD for using various means to sweep the polls, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik thanked the people of western Odisha who voted for the ruling party candidates.

Naveen thanks people

“I would like to thank all the people who have voted for the BJD for such a huge victory in these urban elections. I would also like to thank the leaders and workers of the party for having worked so hard during these elections. This is a tremendous victory for our party in western Odisha,” Mr. Patnaik told reporters in Bhubaneswar while responding to the outcome of the polls.