BJP’s Odia Pride Campaign in Odisha: Strategy and Success

4/5 (6)

On the 4th of June, the indestructible fort of Biju Janata Dal (BJD) in Odisha exploded with the electoral attack of the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP). The land-sliding victory of BJP has not only ended the 24 years of BJD rule but rather overthrown Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, whose dependency over non-Odia bureaucrat raised the question of to whom shall the people of Odisha show their allegiance. This question has been the primary concern for all the Odia voters in the state legislative assembly election. Fortunately, Narendra Modi had to pick up this question to convince the 4.5 crore Odia about their allegiance towards the pride for Odisha.

Rasputin Syndrome in Odisha Politics

Grigori Rasputin, a mystical monk of Russia, was eventually held responsible for hypnotizing the Tsar and Tsarina in political matters. Unknowingly, Rasputin’s advice circulated inside the tsarist regime’s brain and degraded the tsar’s mind to make independent decisions for the people of Russia. With a dramatic upsurge of the Bolshevik revolution, the entire Tsarist Russia was dethroned under Lenin’s leadership.

This same story was repeated in Odisha when CM Naveen Patnaik was convinced by his personal secretary (who later became the Chairman of the 5T scheme) that instead of taking advice of the council of ministers, it seemed impediment to consult an IAS officer who has been a Tamil by birth and a converted Odia for the political ambition.

For the last few years, the ministers of Naveen’s ministry felt outdated from the territory of their jurisdiction; in particular, it was noticed that the ministers were unable to meet the CM in different matters relating to the development of Odisha. Moreover, all the schemes and projects were inaugurated in the name of Naveen but were orchestrated by the personal secretary. The rumours flooded among the general masses about the incapacity of Naveen Patnaik to consolidate the Odia sentiment and pride, and eventually, all the rumours turned into reality, showing the degradation of the political will of CM to maintain Odia’s pride in the political and decision-making process. Willingly, with a response to the dependency of CM on a single non-Odia secretary, veteran party leaders were forced to take away their political allegiance from BJD.

From Criticism to Consolidation  

Bhartiya Janata Patry was convinced to take the incapacity of Naveen Patnaik and highlighted before the public its long-term effect on the self-respect of Odia people and Odisha in general. The BJP leaders like Jayanarayan Mishra, Dharmendra Pradhan, Aparajita Sarangi, Baijayanta Panda, Pratap Sarangi, Pradeep Panigrahi were the well-known critics of Naveen Patnaik’s non-Odia political consultant. Their indication towards the misleading of BJD and Naveen Patnaik was fruitfully presented and accepted by the people of Odisha; moreover, the criticism was under the purview of Odia pride and Odia government in Odisha.

Both in social and printed media, the devastating effect of non-Odia consultation became a strong narrative nurtured before the voters of Odisha. In due course, the criticism was transferred from the leaders to the general public through a psycho-religious perspective – the matter of Jagannath Temple.

For a long time, the issue of Jagannath Temple has been a genuine concern for the Odisha BJP. During the BJD government, the key to the temple gem store (Ratna Bhandar) was lost, and later, a duplicate key was made to meet the demand of the temple committee. Such irresponsibility was brought to the public eye by the BJP to take a public reaction and action against a heinous crime committed to dragging down the respect and sentiments of Odia for lord Jagannath.

Apart from that, the BJP had also pointed out the severe flow of the Shree Jagannath Heritage Corridor, which led to a huge devastation of local Maths and religious property in the name of modernizing the temple corridor. The Odisha BJP was also critical of the unequal development, which was based on the unnecessary expenditure on party-based schemes of BJD and ignorance towards migrant labour, poverty, healthcare, water shortage, mine corruption, and poor educational infrastructure. With strong determination and willpower, the Odisha BJP successfully consolidated public opinion against the BJD rule through constructive criticism.

Modi Magic and Odia Pride

After the notification of the election date, both Lok Sabha and State Assembly, the national figures of BJP were rushed to the people of Odisha to highlight the maladministration and interference of non-Odia in the Naveen Patnaik government. The people of Odisha welcomed almost all the heavy-weight leaders to experience a solid alternative to the BJD. The most popular BJP leader, Narendra Modi, had campaigned for the state BJP and slowly made indications about the danger to Odia’s pride under the carelessness of BJD. Narendra Modi, almost in all the election campaigns and meetings in Odisha, pointed out the role of Odisha and its people in the rise of a developed India (Viksit Bharat), but the economic and social condition of Odia people seems unsatisfactory due to the non-involvement of elected representative in the decision-making process; furthermore, he noticed the officialdom (Officer Raj) in Odisha, especially the non-Odia officers, who have been positioning themselves at the upper ladder of the decision-making process. Highlighting the Jagannath Temple issue, Narendra Modi made a promise before the people of Odisha to constitute a high-level investigating committee to find out the reason behind the sudden disappearance of the gem store’s key. Moreover, his campaign touched the minds and emotions of Odia society’s stakeholders through different electoral promises.

The most significant aspect of Narendra Modi’s campaign was his crucial question – will you allow the non-Odia to ruler over Odisha? Such a question before the voters would surely take their soul towards self-determination and hardcore regional pride for Odia culture and community. The vital combination of Odia’s pride and Narendra Modi’s oratorial obduracy paved the way for the formation of a historic BJP government in Odisha. The Magic of Narendra Modi has snatched the pride of Odisha, after 24 years, from the hand of the BJD through a free, fair and democratic electoral process.

The entire electoral process during the state assembly election in Odisha has indicated the mature political experiment of the Bhartiya Janata Party. Although it was a distant dream for the other party to intervene inside the invincible territory of BJD, the BJP has proved its determination and hardworking culture among the party workers to open up a new chapter in Odisha. Hopefully, the new chapter will be full of happiness, development and prosperity for the Odia people and the blessing of lord Jagannath to carry out the promises of the BJP.

Review Corner

Not at all Somewhat Fairly Very Extremely
Not at all Somewhat Fairly Very Extremely
Extremely Very Fairly Somewhat Not at all

Leave a Reply

Similar Posts