Friday was a day of contradictions – all exit polls were proved wrong on Modi wave while Naveen Patnaik got a pleasant surprise in his party’s tally.
The Odisha chief minister was set for a fourth term with a landslide win for the BJD in the assembly elections and Lok Sabha elections, the best show by the party so far.
In an assembly of 147, the BJD was ahead in 118 seats, the Congress in 16 and the BJP in 9. Others led in four. The BJD has won 100 seats out of the 123 declared so far, while Congress and BJP bagged 11 and four.
In the Lok Sabha, BJD led in 20 seats. In 2009, the party won 14 parliamentary seats.
The BJP was ahead in one seat and the Congress trailing in all seats, down from the five it won in 2009.
Patnaik has won from Hinjili assembly seat in Ganjam. Several of his cabinet colleagues, including Damodar Rout, SN Patro, Prafulla Samal and Rajanikant Singh won their respective assembly seats.
In Lok Sabha, Baijayant Panda and Pinaki Mishra of the BJD won from Kendrapara and Puri constituencies, respectively.
“It is not BJD’s victory alone, it is the victory of four crore Odia people who love Odisha and work for Odia pride. I would like to thank the people of Odisha for giving such a massive mandate to the BJD. I humbly accept this love and affection and we will make an all-out effort to continue our good work for the state,” Patnaik said.
On the other hand, the Congress, out of power in the state for the last 14 years, registered its worst performance ever, with even its state president Jayadeb Jena and Union minister Srikant Jena, who had been entrusted by the high command to revive the party, biting the dust.
“I take full responsibility of our party’s defeat,” said Jayadeb after he lost from the Anandpur assembly constituency in Keonjhar. Srikant lost the Balasore Lok Sabha seat.
Buoyed by the ‘Modi wave’, state BJP president KV Singh Deo said his party would bag more than 50 assembly and 10 Lok Sabha seats. By Friday evening it was, however, amply clear that he was wrong in his calculations.