Third phase polls in Odisha the most keenly watched elections!

Bhubaneswar: Several high profile candidates, including Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and BJD general secretary (organisation) Pranab Prakash Das, are in the fray for the third phase Lok Sabha and Assembly polls in Odisha on May 25.

Six Lok Sabha seats—Sambalpur, Keonjhar, Dhenkanal, Cuttack, Puri and Bhubaneswar—and 42 Assembly constituencies under them are scheduled to go for polling tomorrow.

BJP leader and Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has been pitted against BJD’s Pranab Prakash Das and Congress nominee Nagendra Pradhan in Sambalpur Lok Sabha seat.

Pradhan, a Rajya Sabha MP, is trying his luck in the electoral politics in Odisha after several years. The ruling BJD has fielded Pranab Prakash, its third most powerful leader, to take on Pradhan.

Bureaucrat-turned-politician and BJP Lok Sabha MP from Bhubaneswar Aparajita Sarangi is seeking re-election from the same seat in 2024 polls. The BJD has picked pilot-turned-politician Manmath Routray, the son of expelled Congress MLA Suresh Kumar Routray, to take on Sarangi. The Congress party has given ticket to its student wing leader Yasir Nawaj from the prestigious constituency.

BJP national spokesperson Sambit Patra and BJD leader Arup Patnaik, a former Mumbai police commissioner, are in the fray for Puri Lok Sabha seats.

Six-time MP Bhartruhari Mahtab is once again trying his luck from Cuttack Lok Sabha seat. This time, Mahtab is contesting the polls on a BJP ticket. The Naveen Patnaik-led BJD has nominated former corporate executive Santrupt Misra to take on Mahtab. The Congress party has given ticket to its veteran leader Suresh Mohapatra from Cuttack LS seat.

BJP veteran Rudra Narayan Pani has been pitted against BJD’s Avinash Samal, a trained physician, and Congress nominee Sashmita Behera in Dhenkanal Lok Sabha seat.

Dhanurjay Siddu of BJD, Ananta Nayak of BJP and Binod Bihari Nayak of Congress are in the fray from Keonjhar Lok Sabha seat.

The fate senior BJD leaders Ranendra Pratap Swain, Debi Mishra, Prasanna Acharya and Ashok Panda will be sealed the EVMs in the third phase Assembly polls tomorrow.

Leader of Opposition in Odisha Assembly Jayanarayan Mishra and senior Congress leader Jayadeb Jena are also in the fray in the third phase Assembly polls in Odisha.

Soumya Ranjan Patnaik (Independent) Prakash Behera (BJD), Sofia Firdous (Congress), PC Mohapatra (BJP), Rohit Pujari (BJD), Ananta Narayan Jena (BJD) and Pruthvi Ballav Patnaik (Congress) are some other prominent candidates trying their luck in the third phase polls.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and BJP national president JP Nadda among others campaigned for the BJP candidates while Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and his trusted aide VK Pandian canvassed for the BJD nominees ahead of the third phase polls in the state.

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