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Not On His Three-Time MP, BJD Bets On Newbie For Puri Who Lost In 2019

After the Congress candidate from Puri, Sucharita Mohanty withdrew from her candidacy, the constituency has come into debate for if it would be the repetition of Surat and Indore. But Naveen Patnaik has different plans. Leaving the three-time MP from Puri, he has shown trust in an ex-IPS officer, Arup Patnaik.
02:55 PM May 04, 2024 IST | Riwa Singh
not on his three time mp  bjd bets on newbie for puri who lost in 2019
Arup Patnaik and Naveen Patnaik

Puri has been the citadel of Naveen Patnaik's Biju Janata Dal (BJD). No matter who ruled at the centre, BJD has been winning this Lok Sabha constituency since the first election in 1998 after its inception in 1997.

If one delves a little into the Puri constituency, Braja Kishore Tripathy from BJD won the constituency thrice after whom Pinaki Misra won for three consecutive terms. It wasn't Braja Kishore's magic that led to his win but the aura of Biju Patnaik and then Naveen Patnaik, voters of Puri have been very loyal to this family.

In 2009, the sitting MP of Puri, Braja Kishore Tripathy, resigned from BJD and joined the BJP, only to lose the Puri constituency to the then BJD candidate Pinaki Misra by a considerable margin. The latter, who ruled Puri for three terms and continues to be in the party, has been replaced by a candidate for the Lok Sabha elections in 2024. What is this replacement for if Pinaki is available? The answer is: To field Arup Patnaik from the safe seat.

Who is Arup Patnaik

Arup Patnaik, an ex-IPS officer and the 36th police commissioner of Mumbai is considered one of the most dynamic and decorated IPS officers of the Maharashtra cadre. After his retirement in 2015, it was Naveen Patnaik who personally roped him into politics in 2018.

Arup was given a BJD ticket from Bhubaneshwar in the 2019 elections which he lost to the BJP candidate in a close battle against Aparajita Sarangi who is a Bihar-born ex-IAS officer. Now, the Odisha CM has again shown trust in him and has granted him a ticket from Puri, the constituency that is the fort of the BJD.

Also read: Surat Repeats In Puri? Congress Candidate Returns Ticket; Fight Between Sambit Patra And Ex-IPS Officer Now

After the Congress candidate Sancharita Mohanty withdrew her candidacy citing a financial issue, the game perhaps has become easier for the BJD candidate. Sambit Patra, the current BJP candidate who lost Puri in the 2019 elections still needs to work to become a hindrance for Patnaik. The 2024 elections seem to be a green corridor for Arup Patnaik this time as Puri is scheduled to vote in the sixth phase on May 25.

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