Fearing revolt, Orissa CM and BJD chief Naveen Patnaik Saturday axed two MPs and eight MLAs, including heavyweight leader and former finance minister Prafulla Ghadei, while renominating Bhubaneswar MP Prasanna Patsani in the party’s fifth list for the Lok Sabha polls. The BJD has so far declared candidates for 21 Lok Sabha seats.
Ghadei, eyeing renomination from Sukinda Assembly seat, had been asked to resign from Patnaik’s ministry in August 2012 over his apparent role in Rajya Sabha MP Pyari Mohan Mohapatra’s coup. Naveen, however, nominated Ghadei’s son Pritiranjan from Sukinda. Others who were dropped include Jajpur MP Mohan Jena, Keonjhar MP Jasobant Singh Laguri, former BJD chief whip Rabi Narayan Pani in Pallahada, Prashanta Nanda in Begunia and Arabinda Dhali in Jayadev.
Health minister Damodar Rout managed to hold on to Pradip while Jagatsinghpur MLA Bishnu Das secured a renomination. To counter any rebellion by Ghadei, Naveen nominated trade union leader Mayadhar Nayak’s son Akash Das Nayak from Korei. Filmmaker and former NCP leader Prashant Nanda, who joined the BJD with three other NCP MLAs in 2012, was not given a ticket for his old seat, Begunia.