BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik fielded new faces for three Lok Sabha seats of Sambalpur, Bargargh and Nabarangpur. While former minister Nagendra Pradhan was named as the BJD candidate to contest from Sambalpur, Balabhadra Majhi has been named as the party candidate from the Nabarangpur seat. Dr Pravas Singh was named as the BJD candidate from Bargargh Lok Sabha seat. Former Bajrang Dal national convenor Subhas Chouhan has already entered the contest as the BJP candidate from the same seat in western Odisha.
The BJD denied tickets to the sitting MLAs from Malkangiri and Deogarh
Nagendra Pradhan will face Congress's sitting MP Amar Pradhan and BJP's Suresh Pujari in Sambalpur, while BJD has pitted Balabhadra Majhi against sitting Congress MP Pradeep Majhi and BJP's Parsuram Majhi from Nabarangpur. While denying ticket to Malkangiri MLA Mukund Sodi, BJD nominated Manas Madkami from the Assembly segment and Deogarh MLA Sanjeeb Kumar Pradhan was replaced by Anita Pradhan.
The ministers like Ramesh Majhi (Jharigaon), Prasanna Acharya (Bijepur), Bikram Keshari Arukh (Bhanjanagar) and former minister and speaker Kishore Kumar Mohanty were re-nominated by the BJD supremo. Assembly Speaker Pradip Kumar Amat has been re-nominated from Boudh Assembly segment and Manohar Randhari from Nabarangpur.
Anup Sai, who recently joined the BJD after quiting the Congress, was given ticket from the Brajrajnagar Assembly segment by Patnaik. The MLAs, who have been retained by the party are Sushant Singh (Bhatli), Bijay Ranjan Singh Bariha (Padmapur) and Subhas Gond (Umerkote).
Earlier in the first list, the party had named candidates for 30 Assembly and five Lok Sabha seats. With the second list, the BJD named candidates for the total of eight Lok Sabha seats and 48 Assembly segments. The first phase of polling in the state will be held on April 10 in 70 Assembly and 10 Lok Sabha seats.
The BJD is yet to decide on the candidates for the rest 22 Assembly seats and two Lok Sabha segments for the first phase.
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