Bhubaneswar: With the appointment of noted Gynaecologist Purnachandra Mohapatra as the Vice-President of Odisha unit of BJP yesterday, political circles in the state are agog with speculation that the saffron party may field Mohapatra from Cuttack Lok Sabha seat in 2024 General elections.
Mohapatra, a former chief of Obstetrics and Gynaecology department at SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack, was not associated with any political party earlier.
“I had no connection with any political party. I had not accepted the primary membership of any party earlier. A prominent political party in Odisha had offered me a ticket to fight the elections in 2019. But, I did not accept the offer,” said Mohapatra, who is now on a trip to Goa.
“I have been associated with BJP state unit president Manmohan Samal. BJP national president JP Nadda was also in touch with me. But, the appointment as Odisha BJP Vice-President came as a surprise for me,” added Mohapatra.
The Bharatiya Janata Party had fielded former Director General of Odisha Police and ex-Director General of CRPF Prakash Mishra from Cuttack Lok Sabha seat in 2019 elections. Mishra was defeated by Biju Janata Dal (BJD) nominee Bhartruhari Mahtab by a margin of 1,21,201 votes.
Mahtab had secured 5,24,592 votes while Mishra managed to secure 4,03,391 votes in the poll.
“The BJP had secured above 4 lakh votes from Cuttack Lok Sabha seat in 2019. However, Prakash Mishra has not been active in politics since then. Purnachandra Mohapatra is a very popular doctor in the state. The BJP may field him from Cuttack LS seat in 2024 elections,” said a political observer.