Prime Minister Narendra Modi is all confident of BJP to “shock” everyone in the ensuing electoral competition in Odisha-the state which is not considered to be a stronghold of BJP.
The Prime Minister said, “Odisha is not considered to be a stronghold of BJP, but, this time it will shock everyone. It will repeat a Tripura.” “I have been to Odisha, what enthusiasm there!” he added during an interaction programme- Main Bhi Chowkidar on March 31.
Odisha has been a strategically focus state for BJP since it acquired power in Center in 2014.BJP has invested a lot of time and energy in this eastern coastal state to expand its vote base of 21.5 percent as per 2014 performance. The ruling BJD with 44 percent vote share and 20 parliamentary seats out of 21 is a formidable force that BJP is to take on in the election. In the state assembly of 147 seats, BJD has 118 leaving the opposition look dwarf before it.
BJP is vying to bring about an upset in this election by defeating the mighty Naveen’s BJD that is in power in Odisha since 2000. BJP has wrested power in Tripura last year by defeating the 23-year-old Communist government there.
PM Modi has been to Odisha on March 29, he will make two more trips-on April 2, April 6, to Odisha before the first two phases of the election on April 11 and 18. BJP President Amit Shaha will address two rallies in the southern Odisha today. Besides party bigwigs like Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari and Yogi Aditya Nath are all set to visit Odisha to boost the party’s campaign.