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Patnaik expels MLA from BJD for "anti-people" activities

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Bhubaneswar, Nov 29: Ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) president Naveen Patnaik on Sunday expelled Gopalpur MLA Pradeep Panigrahi from the regional party on charge of "anti- people" activities.

Patnaik expels MLA from BJD for anti-people activities

An official release issued by the BJD said: "Pradeep Panigrahi, MLA Gopalpur is expelled from the primary membership of the party with immediate effect for his anti- people activities."

The three-time MLA and a former minister, is the first leader in the regional party who has been expelled on charge of "anti-people" activities, though many members in the past were removed from the BJD on "anti-party" charges.

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Though the BJD's official order signed by its general secretary (Media Affair) Manas Ranjan Mangaraj mentioned Panigrahi's "anti-people" activities, it was not clarified the nature of the offence he allegedly indulged in.

The party action against Panigrahi came after the anti-corruption vigilance wing established his alleged association with suspended Indian Forest Service Officer (IFS) Abhay Kant Pathak and his son Akash Kumar Pathak. The father-son duo has been arrested and sent to jail on charge of amassing huge properties in a disproportionate asset case.

Panigrahi had allegedly helped Pathak's son Akash in a job fraud. Pathak's son has also been accused of cheating youths from Ganjam district by luring them with jobs in a reputed company. Panigrahi allegedly helped Akash in the cheating incidents, sources in the vigilance said. Panigrahi was not immediately available for comment.

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