New Delhi : Odisha’s ruling BJD has close ties with the Congress which had always neglected the state, a senior BJP leader said on Thursday, hitting back at Congress chief Rahul Gandhi’s allegation that Prime Minister Narendra Modi remote controls Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.
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Lashing out at the Congress, Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan said Gandhi’s family had ruled India for over four decades and his party was in power in Odisha for long but still did nothing for the state.
“The people of Odisha already know how the Congress has neglected Odisha and are aware of the true character of the Congress party,” he said.
Pradhan alleged that the Biju Janata Dal has close ties with the Congress and raised questions on “links” between Patnaik, Gandhi and Christian Michel, the alleged middleman in the VVIP chopper deal now under arrest in India.
The BJP leader said Michel had lobbied for the Eurofighter, a fighter aircraft that competed with Rafale for India’s bid to purchase fighter jets.
A BJD MP’s support for the Eurofighter along with Gandhi exposes the links between the two parties, Pradhan alleged.
He also claimed that West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, Gandhi and Patnaik share the same stand in chit fund scam and protect accused.
At a rally in Odisha, Gandhi accused the Patnaik government of being “remote controlled” by Modi from Delhi.
He said the state was hit by the chit fund scam, in which many leaders of the ruling BJD were involved, while the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government at the Centre was stung by the Rafale scandal.