MLA Suresh Rautray said the party had broken a secrecy with the BJD and sold its votes to help Barsha Singh Bariha win the election . The allegation comes following the decline in Congress vote share from 16.2% in 2019 to less than 2% in the last byelection .
BHUBANESWAR: MLA Suresh Rautray said on Sunday that the party had broken a secrecy with the BJD and sold its votes to help Barsha Singh Bariha win the election.The allegation comes following the decline in Congress' vote share from 16.2% in 2019 to less than 2% in the last byelection, which was triggered by the death of Barshas father Bijay Ranjan Singh Bariha.Our party and the BJD were able to negotiate a deal to exchange votes, though.To help the ruling party candidate win, our own party and some of our senior officials conspired with the BJD.His words came just days after the state leadership was blamed for the strike by Mohammed Moquim and Tara Prasad Bahinipati, both Congress MLAs.Senator Moquim of Barabati-Cuttack said on Friday that top leaders made money by colluding with Padampur rivals and called for tough measures against them.He said the senior leaders have become burdens and should immediately resign.Sarat Pattanayak, president of the Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC), denied the allegations and encouraged his staff to refrain from making anti-party remarks. The charges are absurd.It's regrettable that some of our own party leaders are publicly defaming Congress.Pattanayak said that they should refrain from making derogatory accusations.Despite losing the last seven bypolls, Bijepur, Balasore Sadar, Tirtol, Pipili, Brajarajnagar, Dhamnagar, and Padampur remained confident that Congress would overcome all obstacles before the 2024 polls and form the next government by capturing 90 seats in the 147-member assembly. The Congress' vote share in the 2019 assembly polls had dropped to 16.12% from 25.7% in 2014, while its Lok Sabha vote percentage had dropped to 13.81% in 2019 relative to a 26.38 percent five years ago.Satya Bhusan Sahu, a Congress candidate in Padampur, lost his deposit by just 3,594 votes, a big decrease from his 32,787 votes in 2019.