Odisha Chief Minister and Biju Janata Dal (BJD) president Naveen Patnaik made a whirlwind tour of several districts as campaigning came for the third phase polling in the State came to an end on Sunday.
Mr. Patnaik has been spearheading his party’s campaign across the State in his bid to stop the saffron surge, while the BJP has roped in several top leaders to campaign for their party nominees across Odisha at frequent intervals.
Prominent among the BJP leaders who have already addressed public meetings in Odisha include Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP president Amit Shah, Union Ministers Rajnath Singh and Nitin Gadkari and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.
Mr. Modi and Mr. Shah are scheduled to visit Odisha again before the fourth and last phase of the simultaneous Lok Sabha and Assembly polls in the State on April 29. The two top leaders are focusing on Odisha claiming that their party will spring a surprise this time.
While addressing a rally at Rajnagar on Sunday, Mr. Patnaik said that more than 40 lakh farmers had been extended financial support under the KALIA scheme, and no one can stop its implementation in future. He has been harping on the KALIA which been stopped in view of the model code of conduct.
While the BJD and the BJP were engaged in high pitched campaign, the Congress has been lagging behind badly. The party has not organised many public meetings by its national leaders during the past few weeks.