A large number of party leaders demand action against dissidents

Odisha Chief Minister and Biju Janata Dal president Naveen Patnaik, who survived a bid by a group of dissident leaders of his party to remove him from his post on Tuesday, said on Thursday that he would take the right decision at the right time.

Mr. Patnaik, who was accorded a rousing welcome by his party leaders and workers here on his return from London, said he would hold a meeting with his party legislators, Ministers and Members of Parliament on Friday to discuss various matters.

“I will take the right decision at the right time,” Mr. Patnaik said apparently in response to the demand from his party leaders that stringent action should be taken by him against the dissidents.

A large number of party leaders, who had come forward to express support in his favour when the dissidents made a unsuccessful bid to choose a new leader to replace Mr. Patnaik, demanded that Mr. Patnaik should take strong action against dissident leader and party's Rajya Sabha Member Pyarimohan Mohapatra, legislators and a few Ministers and legislators.

Thousands of party workers thronged the less than one km long road from the Biju Patnaik Airport to Naveen Nivas, the residence of Mr. Patnaik to welcome the Chief Minister on his return to the State.

Many Ministers, legislators and Members of Parliament were also present at the airport to receive Mr. Patnaik who flew in from New Delhi.

Elaborate arrangements were made by the party leaders to welcome Mr. Patnaik in a grand way to show that he was the supreme leader of the BJD and the party was solidly behind him. As many as 94 out of the 104 legislators had put in their signatures expressing their support for Mr. Patnaik.

Amidst slogans in support of Mr. Patnaik, hundreds of party workers were seen holding banners and placards with messages welcoming him.

Mr. Patnaik, who returned to the State by cutting short his visit by a day in the wake of dissident activities in his party, expressed satisfaction over the grand reception accorded to him on his return to the State.

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