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2024 Lok Sabha Polls

Six-time Cuttack MP Bhartruhari Mahtab joins BJP days after quitting BJD

NEW DELHI: In a big setback to the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) on the eve of the Lok Sabha elections, its founding member and six-time Cuttack Lok Sabha MP Bhartruhari Mahtab joined the BJP here on Thursday.

Mahtab, 67, joined the BJP in the presence of senior leaders at the party headquarters here.

Along with him, former BJD MP Sidhant Mohapatra and noted Santali language litterateur Damayanti Beshra, who was conferred the Padma Shri in 2020, also joined the BJP in the presence of Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, party national vice president Baijayant Jay Panda and other senior leaders.

Addressing a joint press conference here after joining the BJP, Mahtab said he will now get the opportunity to work for the development and progress of Odisha.

”Prime Minister Modi’s ‘shakti (strength)’, Home Minister’s ‘vishwas (trust)’ and (BJP chief) J P Nadda ji’s ‘prerna (inspiration)’ will help us move forward,” he said.

Odisha is ”going to” witness a ”change” due to Prime Minister Modi’s leadership, he added.

Mahtab, a six-time MP from the Cuttack Lok Sabha constituency, had resigned from the primary membership of the BJP last Friday. He was also a founding member of the BJD.

Mehtab was elected to Lok Sabha from Cuttack seat in 1998, 1999, 2004, 2009, 2014 and 2019. He defeated the BJP’s Prakash Mishra with a huge margin of votes in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

Source: Press Trust of India

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