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Odisha bypoll put off as candidate dies of COVID-19

By-election to the Pipili assembly constituency in Odisha has been postponed after Congress candidate Ajit Mangaraj died of COVID-19.

The by-election was scheduled for Saturday (April 17). It was necessitated by the death of sitting BJD MLA and former Minister Pradeep Maharathy, who also lost his life to COVID-19.

Mr. Mangaraj was facing acute respiratory problem and had been admitted to a private hospital. He informed his supporters about having tested positive for coronavirus through a Facebook post on Saturday.

Governor Ganeshi Lal, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and Union Petroleum, Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee Niranjan Patnaik expressed their condolences.

Odisha on Wednesday breached the 2000-mark for the first time after the resurgence of COVID-19 pandemic. The State reported 2267 new cases, compared to 1784 on Tuesday. The highest, 458 cases, was reported from Sundargarh district, followed by Khordha district with 348. Three persons died, taking the total death toll to 1933.

Health experts have been expressing concern about non-adherence to COVID-19 protocol during the campaign for Pipili by-election.

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Printable version | May 18, 2021 8:29:35 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/odisha-bypoll-put-off-as-candidate-dies-of-covid-19/article34321369.ece

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