Bhubaneswar: The Gandhi Jayanti on Wednesday provided an opportunity to Odisha`s two major political parties- the ruling BJD and opposition Congress, to organise `padayatra` to reach the people ahead of the 2014 general elections.
The ruling BJD has launched a statewide padayatra programme coinciding with Gandhi Jayanti celebrations while the Congress has decided to start its drive in this month.
BJD president and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik kicked off the mass contact drive in the name of "Jan Sampark Padayatra" at Unit-VI in the city today.
BJD`s padyatra would culminate on October 11 marking the birth anniversary of Jay Prakash Narayan.
The aim of the programme was to make people aware of the achievements of BJD government during the past 13 years and to inform people about the central negligence towards Odisha, a senior BJD leader said.
Similarly, the State Congress has decided to retaliate the ruling party through a similar programme by launching a padayatra this month.
"The party will launch a 33-day state wide padayatra, which will begin from Laxmananath of Mayurbhanj and to culminate at Girisola covering a distance of 500 km," OPCC president Jaydev Jena said.
The party men will inform people during the padayatra that how the Naveen Patnaik government failed to utilise the central funds properly and to tackle poverty in the state, he said.