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High profile MP Baijayant Panda quits BJD, to resign from Lok Sabha soon

Bhubaneswar, May 28, 2018: With "deep anguish, hurt and sorrow", high profile Kendrapara Lok Sabha member Baijayant Panda on Monday resigned from the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD). He sent his resignation letter to BJD president and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. He will separately write to Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan to resign from the Lok Sabha formally soon.

Although things have been going from bad to worse for the past years in the party for the parliamentarian, Panda resigned from the regional party after not a single leader of the BJD, including the CM visited him to console him after the death of his industrialist father Bansshidhar Panda on May 22.

“Although things have been going from bad to worse for the past years, it has plumbed the absolute depths of inhumanity when neither you nor anyone from the BJD turned up to pay their respects to my father Dr Banshidhar Panda, who as everyone knows was a very close friend, supporter and associate of Biju uncle for many decades. In stark contrast, thousands of well wishers came to pay last respects, including senior leaders of all other political parties,” Panda wrote in his three-page resignation letter.

Panda further wrote, “I have been viciously targeted, including being physically assaulted with stones, bricks and eggs last May in Mahanga. I was extremely saddened that even then you (CM Naveen Patnaik) did not bother to call to inquire about my health and safety."

“With the BJD and you yourself having made it abundantly clear that I am unwanted it is only right for me to dissociate from it. Separately, I will be conveying my decision formally to Lok Sabha Speaker to accept my resignation from that August institution upon completion of my religious obligations of bereavement,” said Panda.

On January 24, Naveen Patnaik suspended Panda from the party for his alleged anti-party activities. On January 26, the party had asked Panda to resign from the Lok Sabha on moral and ethical grounds.

Panda was elected to Lok Sabha in 2009 and 2014 and had been a Rajya Sabha member from 2000 to 2009.

Panda had been sidelined by the party leadership for last few years for questioning the role of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s personal secretary VK Pandian in party affairs.

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