With Congress going down to the third position in the recently concluded three-tire panchayat elections in the state, AICC General Secretary and In-Charge of Odisha, B K Hariprasad today stepped down from both the posts.
Mr.Hariprasad, reports said preferred to put in his papers owing moral responsibility for the party’s poor performance in Rural Polls.
As Mr.Hariprasad has resigned, now the focus is on the OPCC President Prasad Harichandan, who has also owned moral responsibility for the party’s poor performance in the panchayat polls.
Congress MLA Taraprasad Bahinipati has openly said that Mr.Harichandan should also go taking moral responsibility.
"As I have been told, he (Hariprsad) has resigned because Zilla Parishads results of Odisha were not good. He resigned to strengthen the hands of Rahul Gandhi so he (Gandhi) could have his own team and may take decisions in regards to whom he would like to have as his office bearers," Congress Spokesperson Brijesh Kalappa told Media Men in New Delhi.
The Congress which in the previous panchayat elections in 2012 had 128 Zilla Paruishad seats, this time could secure only 56 ZP seats.
What has been painful for the Congress is that its main rival in the national level, the BJP, could overtake the oldest party. The BJP this time secured 297 ZP seats against its previous seat number of just 36.
Congress leaders of the state often blame Hariprasad for the party's failure in the Zilla Parishad polls and other issues.
Mr.Hariprasad was probably the first AICC In-Charge of Odisha who had direct confrontation with the Congress MLAs.
He was blamed for creating difference between the Congress Legislature Party and the Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC).
Even, a group of youths belonging to the NSUI and Youth Cpongress, had recently assaulted Hariprasad in his hotel room for not honouring Lalatendu Bidyadhar Mohapatra, who passed away recently.
Hariprasad, instead of bridging gaps between the fraction ridden Congress, became one of the main factor for fuelling intra-party fights within the party.
The faction led by Niranjan Patnaik was totally opposed to Mr.Hariprasad’s manner of functioning the party. They had moved the Congress High Command and made allegation against both AICC General Secretary and OPCC President Mr.Harichandan.