Amid criticism from opposition Congress, Odisha’s Governing BJD Monday extended its support to NDA candidate Harivansh Narayan Singh, who was re-elected as the Deputy Chairman of Rajya Sabha.
The regional party extended its support to the JD(U) MP at the eleventh hour in the House after the party President and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar called up BJD President and his Odisha counterpart Naveen Patnaik.
Though Nitish Kumar had for the first time called up Naveen on September 10, the BJD President kept everybody guessing till the last minute.
However, the BJD had earlier issued whip to its Rajya Sabha members to remain present in the Upper House of the Parliament on September 14.
Accordingly, all the nine BJD MPs remained present in the House and raised their voice in favour of NDA candidate when Vice-President M Venkaiah Naidu put the election to voice vote.
Earlier in the day, a release by Naveen’s office announced BJD’s support for Singh.
The BJD had in 2018 too supported Singh in the election for Rajya Sabha deputy chairman post. Singh had then defected Congress B K Hariprasad and became the RS deputy chairman.
The post, however, fell vacant after Singh’s term in the Rajya Sabha expired in April, 2020. He has now been re-elected to it and is contesting again for the same post.
Immediately after the election, Naveen congratulated Mr.Singh.
Opposition Congress has criticized the BJD for its support to Mr.Singh.
BJD’s real face has again been revealed after it declared support to the NDA candidate for the Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman election.
BJD has been supporting BJP in all issues and they are one party, Odisha PCC(OPCC) President Niranjan Patnaik said in a video message.
He accused the regional party of misleading the people of Odisha and said "The BJD has all along been supporting BJP even though it talks about maintaining equal distance from both the BJP and the Congress.
In fact, there is no difference between the BJD and the BJP, the OPCC President asserted.