Naveen Patnaik expels Mohapatra from BJD



Bhubaneswar: Less than six months after suspending him from the party, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday expelled Rajya Sabha member Pyari Mohan Mohapatra from the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) for anti-party activities.

Patnaik also expelled party general secretary Jagneswar Babu on similar charges after holding a meeting of the party executive committee here.

"Pyarimohan Mohapatra and Jagneswar Babu are expelled, removed from the BJD," Patnaik told reporters here after the meeting.

Mohapatra was Patnaik's non-official advisor for over a decade. He was suspended from the party after he allegedly plotted an unsuccessful coup to unseat the chief minister May 29.

Challenging Patnaik's leadership, Mohapatra subsequently launched Odisha Jana Morcha (OJM), a political forum, saying that he wants to "establish internal democracy" in the state's ruling party.

Reacting to the announcement made by the chief minister, OJM leader Mihir Mohanty said Patnaik ceases to be the president of the BJD as per the constitution of the party. Since there has been no executive committee party meeting since 2010, the meeting which was held Friday was illegal, he maintained.

IANS