(G.N.S) Dt. 27
A day after the Biju Janata Dal asked its suspended MP Baijayant Panda to resign from the Lok Sabha on moral and ethical grounds, Panda said on Saturday that all allegations against him are completely false.
Talking to media at the memorial of Biju Patnaik in Puri, he said, “I am shocked (that) after my suspension my colleagues found all faults with me which they never did in two decades.”
The BJD suspended Panda, the MP from Kendrapara, for alleged anti-party activities on 24 January.
The party has also accused Panda of submitting a false affidavit before the Election Commission during the 2014 General Election, a charge denied by the leader.
“Panda has concealed that he is working as an employee of IMFA and drawing crores of rupees as salary. What made him conceal this fact?” BJD vice-president and party MLA Bedprakash Agarwal asked at a press conference in Bhubaneswar.
Panda has, however, claimed that the party is well aware of his association with the organisation.
“Panda has been directly or indirectly indulging in activities aimed at weakening the BJD, whether it was in Parliament, state, constituency, or media space – no opportunity was missed by Panda to criticise the BJD and eulogise the Opposition,” a BJD release said.
It said that during panchayat elections in Odisha, he did not campaign for the party candidates even in his own constituency and instead indulged in anti-party activities to support Opposition candidates.
Panda was earlier nominated by the BJD twice to the Rajya Sabha in 2000 and 2006. In 2009 and 2014, Panda contested Lok Sabha elections on a BJD ticket and represented Kendrapara constituency.
Earlier in May, Panda was removed from the post of spokesperson of the BJD parliamentary party after he made several remarks on social media over party matters.