NEW DELHI: Odisha’s former chief secretary Bijay Kumar Patnaik on Friday joined the Congress in New Delhi and vowed to work for the ”re-establishment” of democracy in the state.
Patnaik, who retired in 2013, joined the grand old party in the presence of All India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary KC Venugopal, Odisha Congress in-charge A Chellakumar and the party’s state unit president Sarat Pattanayak.
Former Odisha Chief Secretary & Renowned Bureaucrat, Shri Bijay Patnaik joined Congress party in Delhi in presence of Congress President Shri @kharge, Organization Secy Shri @kcvenugopalmp, AICC Odisha in-charge, Shri @DrAChellaKumar & PCC President Shri @SaratPatINC pic.twitter.com/kt0AIQHhXk
— Odisha Congress (@INCOdisha) February 10, 2023
He also met AICC president Mallikarjun Kharge in the national capital.
”I have joined politics with an aim to cleanse the system in Odisha, where people are currently feeling helpless under the prevailing governance model,” Patnaik told reporters.
It is with great enthusiasm that we extend a warm welcome to Shri Bijay Patnaik to the Congress Party.
His extensive expertise & wealth of experience will undoubtedly bolster our efforts and make our fight even stronger. #StrongerTogether pic.twitter.com/q4yj2TrHhr
— Abhishek Mahananda 🇮🇳ଅଭିଷେକ ମହାନନ୍ଦ (@MahanandaINC) February 10, 2023
”At present, a peculiar situation prevails in the state… People do not know who to approach in times of need with MLAs and ministers not able to resolve their issues,” he said.
The former IAS officer also said that he would not hesitate to contest elections in 2024.
The Congress Party is thrilled to welcome Shri Bijay Patnaik, the esteemed former Chief Secretary of Odisha, to our ranks
With his extensive knowledge, broad experience & proven expertise, he will undoubtedly prove to be a formidable asset in our pursuit of progress & prosperity pic.twitter.com/No9kAkZ5Up
— Adhiraj Mohan Panigrahi (@MLA_KHARIAR) February 10, 2023
”I will work to end misrule and re-establish democracy in Odisha,” he stated.
Speculation was rife that the former chief secretary will join the ruling BJD, given his close proximity with Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, but he chose to become a member of the Congress.
Chella Kumar noted that Patnaik, with his ”vast experiences in public life”, will strengthen the party.
The Odisha Congress chief also said that Patnaik joining the Congress will infuse new energy and enthusiasm in the party’s rank and file.
Source: Press Trust of India