Congress, in Opposition in Odisha, on Saturday called the BJP and ruling BJD political partners, hours after Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik as “mitra” (friend).
Inaugurating the IIM Sambalpur campus, PM Modi addressed Mr Patnaik as “Mukhyamantri, mere mitra sriman Naveen Patnaik ji.” Reacting to it, AICC Odisha in-charge Ajoy Kumar said the PM did not utter a single word on Mr Patnaik and his close aide VK Pandian.
“This proves that both BJD and BJP are together, that’s why we organised their symbolic marriage recently. They are in a secret alliance and VK Pandian set up the bond by holding discussions with Amit Shah. BJD is no longer a different party. It has now become BJP,” Mr Kumar alleged.
Refuting the allegation, Odisha BJP president Manmohan Samal said, “He (PM) has indicated that some parties were opposing development works. Now, the people can witness what can be done for them, if BJP forms government in the state.”
While addressing the meeting, Mr Patnaik addressed PM Modi as “Honourable Prime Minister-ji“.
He thanked PM Modi for taking time off his busy schedule to visit Odisha and grace the inauguration of the IIM Sambalpur’s new campus.
“Hon’ble Prime Minister has set a new direction for India and we are on the path to becoming an economic powerhouse,” Mr Patnaik said, adding, “Our endeavour is to be the manufacturing hub of eastern India and I am sure the Prime Minister will extend all necessary support to achieve it”.
He also lauded the PM and said, “Today, we are hosting the First World Odia Language Conference and are fortunate to have the Prime Minister, who is a lover of Indian languages, with us in Odisha”.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)