Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today expressed his deep grief and condoled the demise of former Odisha Assembly Speaker Surjya Narayan Patro.
The Chief Minister described the septuagenarian as an efficient administrator and an able organiser. During his tenure as minister of various Departments, he expedited the process of development in the State. He played an important role as Speaker in upholding the parliamentary tradition in Odisha.
“He (Patro) was admired by one and all irrespective of party affiliation. As a senior leader of the Biju Janata Dal (BJD), he gave a new direction to the party. He played an important role in strengthening the party, especially in Ganjam district. His departure has created a huge vacuum in State politics. I express my deep condolences to the bereaved family and pray that the departed soul may rest in peace,” the Chief Minister said.
The senior BJD leader breathed his last at around 7.30 PM in a private hospital here. He was 74.
A source said that Patro was admitted to the hospital a few hours ago. He was suffering from old age-related complications. However, he did not respond to medical treatment and succumbed.