RS Deputy chairman poll: Support was for JD(U) not BJP: BJD

RS Deputy chairman   poll: Support was for JD(U) not BJP: BJD

Bhubaneswar: Under fire from the Opposition for backing the NDA candidate in the Rajya Sabha deputy chairman's election, the BJD on Saturday said that it had supported the JD(U) due to "ideological similarities" and continues to maintain equal distance from the BJP and the Congress.

The ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) in Odisha had voted in favour of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) candidate Harivansh Narayan Singh-- a first-time MP of the Janata Dal (United).

BJD president and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had on Aug 8 declared

support for Singh after holding talks with JD(U) chief and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

As there were two candidates in the August 9 election, the BJD supported the JD(U) because of our ideological similarities since the JP movement, BJD spokesman Sasmit Patra said in a statement.

"The BJD believes that when it comes to the (election for) constitutional posts such as speaker, deputy chairman of Rajya Sabha, unanimity should be there. However, that did not happen," he said.

"We had made our stand clear two days ago. However, the opposition party leaders are not ready to understand the circumstances. We have nothing more to say," he added.

In the wake of the NDA nominee winning the keenly fought contest with 125 votes against 105 by the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) contestant B K Hariprasad, a fuming Opposition led by the Congress has mounted a scathing attack on the BJD.

Team MP

Team MP

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