**Bhubaneswar: ** With the general elections ahead and as Congress president Rahul Gandhi has already visited Odisha twice in close interval and has also blown the poll bugle by galvanizing the party workers, encouraged Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) today began a ‘Jan Ashirbad Jatra’ here in the capital city.
Led by Leader of Opposition Narasingha Mishra, it began from Lingaraj Mandir to Badheibanka. It was also steered by senior Congress leaders Suresh Chandra Routray and Rashmi Mohapatra.
Taking a dig at the BJP-led Centre, Narasingha Mishra in his reactions said, “Whatever promises were made by the BJP Government at the Centre for the farmers and unemployed youths and others have not yet been kept. Rather, Rahul Gandhi has now promised for Minimum Income to all poor of India. Whatever Congress had promised earlier, all have been kept.”
“Hence, the wave of change is clearly felt in Odisha. Definitely there will be a change in Odisha. There will be fall in the BJD and BJP Governments. The sun of Congress will rise,” he claimed.
On the contrary, BJP MLA Pradeep Purohit countered, “Congress party has got finished in Odisha. The reason is evident from its former MLAs quitting it and joining BJD.”
“During the Jan Sampark Jatra, the people are rather questioning Congress party what development they did during their rule in Odisha for 50 long years. The truth is that Odisha suffered a lot and farmers are suffering. There is no impact of this Jan Sampark Jatra on the people’s mind or the voters,” he remarked.
BJD spokesperson Sasmit Patra hit back, “The Congress ruled the Centre from 2004 to 2014. At that the issues like Polavaram, Special Category Status, Special Grant had been raised by Odisha. Why was the Congress silent then? When the election is round the corner, they now remember about Odisha all of a sudden. Also remained mum over Mahanadi issue. There was cut in funding of 33 Central schemes, still remained silent. Does Congress break its silence when there is election?”
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