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Lok Sabha election 2019 phase 4: Odisha votes today; BJP, Congress, BJD to fight for 6 seats

Lok Sabha election 2019 phase 4: Back in 2014, the BJD had secured a win all six Lok Sabha seats. While BJD faced competition from Congress last time, this time it is the BJP that is bringing the fight to the Naveen Patnaik-led party

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Lok Sabha election 2019 phase 4: Odisha votes today; BJP, Congress, BJD to fight for 6 seats
Back in 2014, the BJD had secured a win all six Lok Sabha seats, and by a substantial margin on top of that.

A total of six parliamentary constituencies will go to polls in the fourth phase of 2019 Lok Sabha election on Monday. Over 9.5 million voters from Jagatsinghpur, Balasore, Bhadrak, Kendrapara, Jajpur and Mayurbhanj Lok Sabha seats in Odisha will cast their ballots for 52 candidates. There are major parties in the fray in Odisha this time - the Biju Janata Dal (BJD), which is in power in the state, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Indian National Congress (INC).

Back in 2014, the BJD had secured a win all six Lok Sabha seats, and by a substantial margin on top of that. While BJD faced competition from Congress last time, this time it is the BJP that is bringing the fight to the Naveen Patnaik-led party.

The most interesting battle in Odisha during the fourth phase of Lok Sabha election this year is set in thee coastal constituency of Kendrapara. Baijayant Panda, who once was very close to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, was suspended from BJD earlier this year over allegations of anti-party activities. He later joined BJP and is contesting on its ticket. He will face BJD's actor-turned-politician Anubhav Mohanty. Although Mohanty is not a political contender, the real fight is between old friends Panda and Patnaik.

And a lot is at stake for both heavyweights of Odisha politics. A defeat on Panda's part will be a huge political setback for the longstanding parliamentarian. On the other hand, BJD's loss from Kendrapara might be seen as a huge personal loss for the Odisha Chief Minister.

Another high profile constituency in Odisha during the fourth phase is the Balasore Lok Sabha seat. BJD has fielded sitting MP Rabindra Jena from Balasore, whereas BJP has nominated its national executive Pratap Sarangi. Congress, which still holds some sway in the constituency, has named Navajyoti Patnaik as its candidate from Balasore.

In Mayurbhanj, the BJD has nominated Debashis Marandi who will face BJP's Bishweswar Tudu. Another interesting name in the contest from the constituency is Jharkhand Mukti Morcha's Anjani Soren, who is the daughter of party chief Shibu Soren.

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