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‘Hurt and unhappy’ Biju Janata Dal MP Jay Panda resigns from party

The BJD lawmaker was suspended from the party for alleged anti-party activities in January.

india Updated: May 29, 2018 00:09 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Bhubaneswar
Baijayant Jay Panda,Jay Panda,Jay Panda quits
Biju Janata Dal lawmaker Baijayant Jay Panda.(HT FIle Photo)

Baijayant Jay Panda said on Monday he was quitting the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) months after he was suspended from the primary membership of Odisha’s ruling party amid a widening rift with chief minister Naveen Patnaik.

“It is with deep anguish, hurt and sorrow that I have decided to quit the kind of politics into which our BJD has descended,” he wrote in his three-page letter resignation letter to party head Patnaik.

Panda said he was “hurt and unhappy” over the fact that members of the ruling party did not attend the funeral of his father Bansidhar Panda. The well-known industrialist died on May 22 in Bhubaneswar.

“It has plumbed the absolute depths of inhumanity when neither you nor anyone from the BJD turned up to pay their last respects to my father Dr Bansidhar Panda, who as everyone knows was a very close friend, supporter and associate of Biju uncle (Biju Patnaik) for decades (sic),” he wrote.

The member of Parliament from Kendrapara also said that he was heartbroken to find out that several BJD leaders were “restrained” from attending the funeral service.

“With the BJD and you (Patnaik) yourself having made it abundantly clear that I am unwanted, it is only right for me to dissociate from it,” Panda said.

“Separately, I will be conveying my decision formally to the Honourable Speaker of the Lok Sabha to accept my resignation from that August institution upon completion of my religious obligations of bereavement,” he added.

Panda was suspended from the party by Patnaik on January 24 for indulging in “anti-party activities”. The party demanded his resignation from the Lok Sabha on moral grounds and alleged that the legislator concealed his position in a corporate house while filing affidavit during the 2014 general elections.

Last year, he was removed as the spokesperson of the parliamentary party.

The articulate and widely networked leader was increasingly isolated since last year after he called for “introspection” within the party following the emergence of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as the principal opposition to the BJD in the panchayat elections.

Senior BJD leader Debi Mishra said he has heard about Panda tendering his resignation. “CM Naveen is the right person to comment on it. In anyway, he has been working on his own terms for the past few days,” said Mishra.

(With agency inputs)

First Published: May 28, 2018 13:46 IST