Former Minister Debasis Nayak quits BJD, joins BJP

Bhubaneswar: Senior leader and former Odisha Minister Debasis Nayak joined Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Sunday hours after resigning from the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) ahead of the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections in the state.

Nayak, a four-time MLA from Bari constituency in Jajpur district, joined the saffron party at a special programme in the presence of BJP’s Odisha unit president, Manmohan Samal and other senior leaders.

Welcoming the former Minister, Samal said Nayak’s entry into the saffron party would further strengthen the organisation in Jajpur and adjoining areas of the state.

Earlier, in a letter to BJD president and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, the ex-Minister and four-time MLA conveyed his decision to resign from the primary membership of regional party with immediate effect.

“With a heavy heart, I am submitting my resignation with immediate effect. Thank you very much for giving me an opportunity to serve the people of Odisha as well as the party,” Nayak wrote in his letter to Naveen.

The ex-Minister had been elected to the state Assembly from Bari constituency in Jajpur four times in a row from 2000 to 2014. He had served as the minister for Sports and Youth services and Information and Public Relations in the state.

However, the four-time MLA was denied BJD ticket in 2019 Assembly elections in the state. Sources said Nayak decided to quit the ruling BJD as he felt neglected and sidelined in the party.

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