Bhubaneswar, Oct 23 : The campaign for the bypolls to Balasore and Tirtol Assembly constituencies in Odisha has gained momentum with three major political parties - BJP, Congress and BJD - trying their best to woo the voters.
The by-elections to the two seats is scheduled to be held on November 3.
Amid the fear of the Covid-19 pandemic, the political heavyweights are reaching out to the people through various mediums, including door-to-door campaign and virtual rallies.
Addressing a virtual rally from the party headquarters here, Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Friday hit out at the BJD government and appealed to the voters in Tirtol to use their franchise in favour of the BJP.
Pradhan raised several issues starting from Covid mismanagement to rising unemployment, chit fund scam and poor health infrastructure in the state.
He alleged that the state government only made promises prior to the elections but has failed to fulfil any of them.
"The Centre released Rs 22,267 crore for fighting the Covid-19 battle. But the health service in the state is in a precarious condition," said the minister.
He alleged that the funds being released by the Centre are siphoned off in the state.
On the other hand, Odisha Congress in-charge A. Chella Kumar, Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) President Niranjan Patnaik and former MP Pradeep Majhi campaigned for the party candidate in Tirtol on Friday.
The PCC chief said the BJP government at the Centre and the BJD government in the state have failed to carry out development works.
He said the spinning mills at Tirtol, which were established under the Congress regime, have been closed after the BJD came to power.
"During the pandemic, when migrant workers returned from different states, there was a demand by the Congress to revive them. This would have generated local employment. But unfortunately, our pleas have fallen on deaf ears of the government," he added.
The ruling BJD has deployed several ministers and senior leaders in both the constituencies to ensure victory of the party's candidates.
Panchayati Raj Minister Pratap Jena said the party would get the support of the people in both the constituencies as Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has executed several development works in these constituencies.
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