BJP, BJD split in Orissa

March 8th, 2009 - 12:14 am ICT by IANS  

Bhubaneswar, March 7 (IANS) The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) late Saturday announced that they would fight Lok Sabha and assembly elections in Orissa separately, ending their decade-long alliance.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, who heads the BJD, told reporters here that his party will fight the Lok Sabha and assembly elections alone.

The BJD and BJP jointly fought the Lok Sabha polls in 1998, 1999 and 2004 and the assembly elections of 2000 and 2004.

In both assembly polls, the BJD contested 84 seats and BJP 63. In the general elections, the BJD contested 12 seats and BJP nine.

The trouble started when the BJD said it wanted to contest more seats in the 2009 Lok Sabha polls as its popularity had increased. But BJP leaders wanted to maintain the old ratio.

Patnaik and BJP MP Chandan Mitra held talks over seat-sharing that failed to break the deadlock, leading to the formal announcement.

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