To quell rumours about Naveen Patnaik’s health, BJD releases CM’s work-out video
The ruling Biju Janata Dal on Friday evening released a video reportedly showing chief minister and BJD chief Naveen Patnaik exercising and jogging to quell rumours surrounding the health of the four-time chief minister.
In a video posted on Twitter and trending under the hashtag #NaveenTheJetEngine, Patnaik wearing a half-sleeved black T-shirt and a black trouser, is seen jogging and exercising inside the corridors of Naveen Niwas, his residence near the Biju Patnaik International Airport. The 2.08 minute long video clip, purportedly shot sometime in 2019 shows Patnaik sitting on a cycling machine in his residence and lifting weight bars. Towards the end of the video, Patnaik signs off saying “Getting ready to fight for the people of Odisha”.
Watch: Odisha CM’s workout video released by BJD to quell rumours about ill health
A TV channel airing news of the electoral battle in 2019 implies that the video was shot on April 2. However, HT could not verify when the video was actually shot. BJD did not respond to queries seeking comments on the video.
The video was released amid swirling rumours about the ill health of Patnaik, who as per his aides suffers from spondylosis. There have been suspicions for long that Patnaik’s health is deteriorating and many BJD leaders in private expressed doubts if the CM can take the heat and dust of the campaign in his stride during the month-long polls.
Rumours about Patnaik’s health first originated in 2014 when he made fewer public appearances during the Assembly elections. The rumours gained credence in early 2017, when he could not campaign before the Panchayat polls. On August 15, 2017, the rumours got a fillip when 73-year-old Patnaik felt dizzy while delivering the Independence Day speech in Bhubaneswar. Sweating profusely, he had to cut short his speech and left the podium midway.