Bhubaneswar: In a befitting reply to critics who have projected BJD as a personality-centric party, BJD president and Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Thursday said that his party is not dependent on any particular leader, including him, for its survival and growth.
“Biju Janata Dal is not a political party and it is not dependant on some or other leaders, including me for its survival and growth,” said Patnaik while speaking at the party’s foundation day event at the party headquarters here.
In a strong message on the inherent strengths and longevity of BJD, Patnaik dispelled all misgivings saying BJD in last 22-years has become a political movement
“Biju Babu was saying that don’t be loyal to me but be loyal to the cause of Odisha’s destiny. True to his words, BJD has now become a people’s movement,” said Patnaik.
The party is led by Naveen Patnaik, the current Chief Minister of the State and son of former Chief Minister Biju Patnaik, after whom the party is named.
In power for around two decades, the Naveen Patnaik-led BJD celebrated its 23rd foundation day, which was the first after coming to power for the fifth consecutive term this year with a huge victory.
Instead of organising a grand rally to celebrate the day, the party celebrated the foundation day in all 147 Assembly constituencies while Patnaik addressed a gathering at the party headquarters here.
Founded in December 1997, the party has been in power since 2000, wining the State Assembly elections for a historic fifth consecutive term in May 2019.