Jharsuguda: With the announcement of the Jharsuguda by-election date, political activities have intensified in the constituency. The by-election is scheduled for May 10, and the statutory notification will be published on April 13, after which the nomination process will begin. While the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) has already announced its candidate, the daughter of late health minister Nab Das, the main rivals, Congress and BJP, are yet to announce their candidates.
For the BJP, state general secretary Tankadhar Tripathi is being considered, although he faces opposition from some senior leaders of the district BJP as he is not a resident of the district.
Last month, some BJP leaders expressed their displeasure by writing a letter to the national president of the party. Dinesh Jain, who was the BJP candidate in the previous assembly elections (2019), is also being discussed as a potential candidate. With an increase of 17 percent in votes since the 2014 elections, it is speculated that Jain may receive the party’s candidate once again.
Meanwhile, Congress has yet to announce a specific candidate for the constituency. A five-member team from the Pradesh Congress Committee recently visited Jharsuguda and met with local party leaders. They have prepared a list of six potential candidates, two of whom have emerged as front-runners. Mahendra Naik, who contested the previous general elections from Jharsuguda, is one of the names being considered.
The party is also reportedly considering nominating Tarun Pandey, son of former MLA Biren Pandey, who passed away recently. There are rumors that Congress may nominate Tarun to win favor votes due to his father’s recent death. However, the party may also consider nominating a woman candidate to appeal to female voters. The final decision rests with the state committee of the party.
The nomination process begins on April 13, and the last date for submission of nominations is April 20.