Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, who returned here today from London, said he will look into “certain developments” when he reaches Bhubaneswar, in an apparent reference to a meeting of MLAs with powerful BJD MP Pyari Mohan Mohapatra fuelling rumours of cracks within the party.
“I understand that in my absence, certain events took place…I will look into them when I reach Bhubaneswar,” Patnaik told reporters here.
Shortly after reaching here, he held deliberations with party MPs Baijayant Panda and Pinaki Mishra and said he would also consult his party members after reaching Bhubaneswar this evening.
“I will certainly see what has to be done,” he said.
The meeting between the legislators and Mohapatra on Monday evening had triggered speculation of cracks within the ruling BJD in the state, which was, however, dismissed by Mohapatra at a press conference yesterday. “There is absolutely no threat to Naveen Patnaik from me. He is completely safe as chief minister as he is the leader of the BJD,” Mohapatra had said.
At least 21 BJD legislators, including three ministers, had met at the residence of Mohapatra with some leaders terming the exercise as “pressure tactics” by one group close to the Rajya Sabha member at a time when Patnaik was away.
Reacting to the development, Patnaik had in London deplored the attempts to divide the party.
“I understand that in my absence, an MP of my party was stirring trouble against my state government. And also trying to divide the Biju Janata Dal. This is deplorable,” Patnaik had told PTI in London.