ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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JAMIAT ULEMA-Sponsored Dissent

Biju Patnaik is the only politician in Orissu who can claim a following among the people. One can call it ehurisma, one can describe it as a built-up myth or see it as a reward ot large .scale obligation, but the fact remains that the only political challenge lndira Gandhi has had to face in the state since 1969 has been from Biju Patnaik, the greatest representative of Oriya national sentiments. A man with .short-lived passions, Patnaik has started and folded up as many industries as political parties. He backed the 'Syndicate' after 1969 but remained with Indira Gandhi for a year after the split. When he could not pull on well there, he propounded the theory that the future belongs to "provincial parties espousing hopes and aspirations of the people of their respective states". But today, when a powerful section within his old Lok Dal(K) favours a regional party Patnaik likes to be in the 'national mainstream'.

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