Political Parties All Praise For Real Heroes Of Odisha Elections

13 April 2019

Debashish Maharana

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Bhubaneswar: The Phase-I poll (on April 11) in Odisha has hogged the headlines not only for the smooth and peaceful conduct of the initial phase polling as well as good turn-out of voters despite sizzling summer, but also for the heroic acts of 36 polling officers in the Maoist-infested Malkangiri district.   

Braving rocky terrain and hilly areas, these officers walked down 15 kilometers without food and water to take the EVMs back to safety and have thus become examples of real-life ‘Newtons’.

Odisha Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Surendra Kumar has already extolled them yesterday (April 12). In his media reactions, the Odisha CEO has stated, “Most of the pockets in the Phase-I polling were Maoist-affected. Our polling officers have smoothly conducted their job in those extremely risky areas. I would like to convey my special thanks to them. About nine polling parties have returned from the polling booths after votes on foot. I also convey my special thanks to them all. I express my gratitude for their hard labour and contributions for make conducting the elections smoothly. Such act is extremely praisworthy. This spirit is encouraging us more to perform our duties.”

Congress party’s Nabarangpur MP candidate Pradeep Majhi in his reactions said, “It is good sign for democracy that the people turned out in large number to cast their votes. The polling officers walked down for 15 kms in the jungle after voting. It implies the level of public awareness as well as the enthusiasm. My pranam (reverence) to the polling officers the way they dared to enter the Maoist-affected areas in a bid to uphold and protect democracy.”

Odisha BJP vice-president Samir Mohanty in his comments said, “I indeed extol them the way they underwent the tribulations and walked down with the EVMs. Definitely those persons are heroes.”

BJD spokesperson Sasmit Patra said, “Despite the perils, they have further strengthened the Indian democracy. We welcome and strongly support this spirit. We thank and express our gratitude. This is milestone for every voter of Odisha as well as India.”

Notably, a movie by the name of ‘Newton’ based on a diligent and honest Indian polling officer created ripples internationally two years back and many had commented that the protagonist Nutan (Newton) Kumar played by Rajkumar Rao was someone ‘too good to be true’. 

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Pradeep Majhi, Nabarangpur (Congress) MP Candidate

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Samir Mohanty, Vice-President, BJP, Odisha

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Sasmit Patra, Spokesperson, BJD