Naveen Patnaik Still Popular, But Can Voter Wisdom and BJP’s Rapid Growth Beat the Odds in Odisha?
While Naveen Patnaik continues to be a popular chief minister, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has placed himself firmly in the Odisha backyard. This shift is likely to get reflected in how the Oriya people use their two votes this time – one for the Assembly and the other for the Parliament.
If you want to see for yourself how evolved the Indian electorate has become and how democracy has matured, come to Odisha. For it is here that one realises how discerning the voter is while choosing between Delhi and Bhubaneshwar. The clarity could get Odisha the moniker of Indian democracy’s wisdom tooth
Check for yourself. In Botanda, on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar, Deeptimani Garnaik has stepped out of her home to watch Jhamu Yatra – a ritual where people walk on burning charcoal as part of Vishu festivities – the Oriya New Year. Deeptimani tells me she is supporting Naveen babu in Odisha as he has worked for the women, and adds in the same breath, she will vote for Narendra Modi in the Lok Sabha elections.