He was expelled from the BJD recently

Although expelled from the Biju Janata Dal (BJD), Haraprasad Sahu, who filed his nomination papers as independent for Kavisuryanagar Assembly constituency on Friday, continues to claim himself to a an devoted supporter of the BJD president and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.

His supporters who were part of the rally that reached Chatrapur for filing of nomination papers, shouted a unique slogan ‘ame swadhin, ama neta Naveen (I am independent but my leader is Naveen). Mr. Sahu also repeated this slogan several times.

Speaking to The Hindu , Mr. Sahu said, “My state can be compared with Ekalavya of Mahabharat, who was never accepted by guru Dronacharya, who even compelled Ekalavya to cut down thumb of his right palm as gurudakshina. Like Ekalavya my love and respect for Mr. Patnaik has not diminished despite the actions taken against me,” he said. He added that during the campaign, he and his supporters would try to project that they are real supporters of Mr. Patnaik rather than the candidate who has got BJD ticket. It may be noted that octogenarian senior leader of the BJD Sugnan Kumari Deo is the BJD candidate from Kavisuryanagar Assembly constituency.