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Amit Shah meets Odisha BJP leaders before Panchayat polls

Bhubaneswar: BJP president Amit Shah today met Odisha party leadership ahead of the three-tier panchayat elections in the state.

“The suggestions given by Shah will benefit BJP in the state during the panchayat elections,” Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan told reporters after Shah held a closed door meeting with party leaders enroute to Puri.

Pradhan did not divulge details about Shah’s suggestions.

“The party president’s valuable suggestions will boost confidence of party leaders, workers and supporters,” he said.

Pradhan said state BJP president Basant Panda apprised Shah about the party’s preparedness for the panchayat polls, adding that, “The BJP president also sought information about the preparedness of rival parties.”

Shah was on a day-long tour of Odisha at the invitation of Puri Shankaracharya Nischalananda Saraswati, during which he had darshan of Lord Jagannath at Puri and attended the installation of Maa Bimala idol at the temple in Govardhan Peeth premises in Puri.

“We hope that the election results will be on expected lines,” Union Minister Jual Oram said, adding that, Shah’s suggestion would be helpful for party activists.

This was the BJP president’s third visit to the state after he took over the reigns of the party.

Shah’s visit came at a time when the opposition BJP is on a collision course with the ruling BJD after the recent CBI raids on some BJD leaders in connection with the Seashore chit fund scam.

While BJD termed the CBI action as politically motivated, BJP described a vigilance case on Union Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan’s brother Soumendra as political vendetta by the Naveen Patnaik-led-government.