Bhubaneswar: There is a conspiracy to malign the BJD party in Odisha.

That is what the Odisha chief minister, Naveen Patnik, suspects.

“It appears to be a conspiracy”, Patnaik said  referring to the allegation of irregularities in BJD’s 2014 election funds.

The chief minister, who returned on Sunday after a five a visit to New Delhi, said, “The allegations are “malicious, fabricated and false” . Legal steps may be taken in the matter if necessary, he added.

When reporters asked whether the allegations are part of a conspriacy, Patnaik said it appears to be like that. “There might be an attempt to malign the party’s image,” he added.

The allegations were leveled in a media report by Times Now news channel. In fact, the Orissa High Court issued a notice to the Election Commission on a writ petition that sought direction to the poll panel for early completion of inquiry on alleged “false” statements made about BJD’s election expenses during the 2014 Assembly polls.

The petitioner, a social activist, has alleged “irregularities” in the election expenses of Patnaik as a BJD candidate for the Hinjili Assembly segment. He also alleged “discrepancies” in the sworn statements of expenses both by Patnaik and his party Biju Janata Dal, of which he is the president.

Following this the the leader of the opposition, Narasimha Mishra, said that the matter should be probed thoroughly. The BJP on the other hand said it will move the enforcement directorate and income tax department for an investigation into the information provided by the BJD regarding its election expenses.

The chief minister made a critical comment on the BJP’s miserable defeat in the Zilla Parisad election in Nuapada district.” BJP came third in the polls even though the saffron party’s state unit president belonged to the area”, he said. The BJD won the seat while the Congress ended up in second election.