Odisha

Know The Likely New Faces Of Odisha Cabinet

**Bhubaneswar: ** In a dramatic move, some of the most powerful ministers of the Odisha Cabinet have been asked by the CM to devote themselves to strengthening the organisation as the BJP is set to give a tough fight to the ruling party, which has been in power for 17 years.

While Governor S.C. Jamir, who has been on a vacation, would land in Bhubaneswar on Saturday, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik would leave for New Delhi on Sunday to attend an anti-Naxal meeting to be held there on Monday.

Sources said that Sanjay Dasburma, Arun Sahu, Pranab Prakas Das, Debi Prashad Mishra, Jogendra Behera, Lal Bihari Himirika, Sudam Marandy and Snehangini Churia would be resigning from their posts while Niranjan Pujari, Mangala Kisan, Dhaneswar Majhi, Padmanabh Behera, Pratap Jena, Susant Singh, Rohit Pujari, Dambaru Sisa and Debasis Nayak and Ranendra Pratap Swain could be appointed to the Cabinet.

Pratap Jena and Ranendra Pratap Swain, both represent different constituencies of the Cuttack district in the assembly and both are well experienced as ministers. Moreover, BJD has done quite well in recently concluded panchayat elections in their respective constituencies. Their selection to the cabinet will strengthen the party in the Cuttack district.

If Pranab Prakas Das resigns, BJD will chose someone else from the Jajpur district for the cabinet.
MLA From Bari Debasis Nayak and Barchana MLA Amar Satpathy are reportedly being considered for the job in the new cabinet.

In the Zilla Parishad elections, BJD’s performance in the politically important Bargarh district was literally pathetic. Minister Snehangini Chhuria, who represents the district in the cabinet could neither prove her popularity, nor impress the party leadership with her performance as a minister. Young leader Bhatli MLA Sushant Singh, currently working as the president of District Planning Commission may replace her in the cabinet.

Similarly, Padmanabh Behera and Niranjan Pujari can be considered for cabinet portfolios in order to woo the Subarnapur electorates while Mangala Kisan and Dambaru Sisa may join the cabinet to appease the Sundergarh and Malkangiri voters respectively.

Dhaneswar Majhi and Rohit Pujari can also emerge as dark horses in the race.

Notably. amid talks of a cabinet reshuffle, Odisha Assembly speaker Niranjan Pujari on Friday resigned from his position giving rise to speculation that several ministers may resign apparently to pave the way for the reshuffle. Later in the day, the BJD appointed nine senior leaders including five ministers as observers of 11 districts in the state to further strengthen its base at grassroots level.

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