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BJD fields cinestar Anubhav against Jay Panda, drops 6 MPs

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Press Trust of India Bhubaneswar
The BJD Wednesday fielded Odia film star and its Rajya Sabha MP Anubhav Mohanty against BJP national vice-president and spokesperson and four-time MP Baijayant Panda in Kendrapara Lok Sabha seat, party sources said.
Panda had quit BJD last year following differences of opinion with Chief Minister and BJD chief Naveen Patnaik and had joined the saffron party earlier this month.
Mohanty is among the nine nominees announced by the BJD, which denied rickets to six of its sitting MPs, the sources said.
The sitting BJD MPs who have been denied tickets are Prasanna Patsani (Bhubaneswar), Nagendra Pradhan (Sambalpur), Kulamani Samal (Jagatsinghpur), Ramchandra Hansda (Mayurbhanj), Arjun Sethi (Bhadrak) and Rita Tarai (Jajpur).
The MPs who have been renominated were Pinaki Mishra (Puri) and Rabinda Kumar Jena (Balasore), they said.
The BJD has fielded retired IPS officer and former Mumbai Police Commissioner Arup Patnaik in place of Patsani, a five-time MP. The top cop will face bureaucrat-turned politician and BJP nominee Aparajita Sarangi in his madien poll battle.
The party nominated former works secretary Nalini Kanta Pradhan as candidate from Sambalpur Lok Sabha seat. Pradhan replaced sitting MP Nagendra Pradhan.
It replaced eight-time MP and former union minister Arjun Sethi and fielded Manjulata Mandal, a new face in Bhadrak Lok Sabha seat, the sources said.
Sarmistha Sethi replaced sitting MP Rita Tarai in Jajpur Lok Sabha seat, while sitting MLA Rajashree Mallick has been named as the BJD candidate to contest from Jagatisnghpur Lok Sabha seat.
The ruling party fielded Debasish Marandi in Mayurbhanj Lok Sabha seat and denied renomination to sitting MP Ramchandra Hansda.
All the nine candidates will face polls in the third and fourth phase on April 23 and April 29.
BJD is however, yet to announce the candidates for the Cuttack, Dhenkanal and Keonjhar parliamentary seats.
It had earlier announced candidates of none other Lok Sabha seats.
Polling is scheduled to be held for 21 Lok Sabha and 147 Assembly seats in the state in four phases from April 11.

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First Published: Mar 27 2019 | 9:25 PM IST

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