TNI Bureau: Despite the alleged misuse of state machinery to scuttle the ‘Kranti Samavesa’ or grand rally in Bhubaneswar, former BJD strategist Pyari Mohan Mohapatra’s ‘Odisha Jana Morcha’ showed its strength in Bhubaneswar on October 28, Sunday.
Around 25,000-30,000 people from different parts of the state, gathered at the Lower PMG to express solidarity with Pyari Mohan Mohapatra, which caused a panic among the BJD leaders. People from Jajpur, Pipili-Delang, Mayurbhanj, Dharamsala, Kalahandi, Sambalpur, Ganjam, Bhubaneswar, Cuttack and other parts of Odisha attended the grand rally organised by the Odisha Janmorcha.
Most people came by train and passenger buses due to the fear of being targeted by the BJD cadres. The Commissionerate Police had placed three check-points at Gangapada, Uttara Square and Nakhara at the outskirts of Bhubaneswar to check the influx of OJM workers. Many people were reportedly harassed and failed to reach the venue. However, that did not deter the mood and spirit of the supporters of Pyari Mohan Mohapatra. Even hundreds of people held a bike rally in Bhubaneswar in his support.
While criticizing Naveen Patnaik and other leaders in BJD, Pyari Mohan Mohapatra sought to hijack the agenda of the party. He rejected the allegations that he has been working in tandem with the Congress, saying his ideology and principles are based on anti-Congress plank and he would never compromise on that.
The ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) and its leaders tried to downplay Pyari Mohan’s show of strength and called it as a ‘flop show’ in public, but they have realized that Pyari could be down, but certainly not out. In the coming days, he could emerge as a leader to reckon with in Odisha politics.