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Not A Quitter, Former Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik Gears Up For A New Role

With the BJP government firmly in place in Odisha, the key question in everybody’s mind: “Is it the end of Biju Janata Dal”?  “Not really…the political drama has just begun,” says a clued-in political analyst from Utkal University. Yes, BJD’s supremo Naveen Patnaik is not giving up the fight. Patnaik is aiming to be a formidable opposition force to BJP. He wants to stay relevant and aims to bounce back at the right time. Immediate plan of action is to keep the party united, regroup rank and file and prepare strategies for the future. Observers say, this makes sense as Naveen is still loved by four-crore plus Odias. He is likely to take over as leader of opposition in the Odisha Assembly. Rumours are BJD MLA Prasanna Acharya is now batting to be Naveen’s deputy in the Assembly. Naveen babu’s future success will depend on four factors, one, what “mantra ” he has which will enable him to keep his numbers intact, two, having ears to the ground addressing rank and file concerns, three, quickly creating second rung leaders and four grooming a successor. After being in power for over two decades, Naveen babu for the first time is an opposition leader. So how he converts this into a political opportunity will have to be seen. Right now he is playing cards close to his chest.