Meet Sulochana Das: Former journalist who has become Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation's 1st woman mayor
Biju Janata Dal (BJD) candidate Sulochana Das became the first woman mayor of Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Saturday. She defeated his closest rival Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) Suniti Mund by a margin of more than 60,000 votes. Sulochana received over 1 lakh votes.
On her victory, Sulochana told news agency ANI that she wants to thank the people of Bhubaneswar and chief minister Naveen Patnaik - who is also the president of BJD.
“Smart and vibrant Bhubaneswar is our first priority and we will work for that,” he was quoted as saying.
Earlier this month, Patnaik named Sulochana as BJD's mayoral candidate for the BMC polls. She had said at the time that she belongs to a “humble family” and “will try to meet aspiration of the people,” according to PTI.
Who is Sulochana Das?
Starting her career as a journalist, Sulochana's first political stint began with the grand old Congress party. She later switched to BJD and also worked as the regional party's spokesperson.
In 2019, the Patnaik-led Odisha government appointed Sulochana as the state commissioner for Persons with Disabilities (PwD).
The BJD, meanwhile, whitewashed the Odisha civic elections that were conducted on Thursday. The ruling party emerged victorious in 76 of the 108 urban local bodies, including all the three municipal corporations - Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation, Berhampur Municipal Corporation and Cuttack Municipal Corporation.
The Berhampur Municipal Corporation and Cuttack Municipal Corporation were won by BJD's Sanghamitra Dalei and Subas Singh, respectively. While Dalei defeated her nearest BJP rival Sabita Suar, Singh defeated Congress' Giribala Behera.
Following the clean sweep, Patnaik took to Twitter to thank the people of his state for their “overwhelming support”. “The win is a reflection of the outpouring of love for BJD Odisha and untiring effort of thousands of party workers,” his post on the micro-blogging site read.