Bhubaneswar: Former Congress leader Chakradhar Paika formally joined the BJD on Thursday.
Paika arrived at Naveen Niwas with his supporters where he joined the regional party in the presence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik .
“I was with Biju Babu’s Utkal Bharat party in 1974 and elected as the MLA on the party ticket. Since I am in the last phase of my political career, I am willing to serve the people of Mohana as a BJD member,” Paika told the media.
Asked about contesting the forthcoming assembly elections, he said his party will take a decision on it. “I have joined the BJD without any condition. I will take up whatever responsibility the party bestows on me,” he pointed out.
Paika, however, said that he had left the Congress in 2014 after the party denied him a ticket to contest the assembly elections.
Paika was elected to the state assembly from Ramgiri constituency in 1974 as a candidate of the Utkal Bharat party. Later in 2009, he was elected from Mohana constituency as a Congress candidate. Since the Congress did not give him the ticket in 2014 assembly elections, he contested from Mohana as an independent candidate and lost the election.