Bhubaneswar: At least 10 sitting MLAs and 5 MPs of ruling Biju Janata Dal are unlikely to get tickets in the coming State Assembly and Lok Sabha elections, scheduled to be held in 2019.
To accomodate 33% women in the list of candidates for the 2019 elections, Naveen has to deny tickets to 10 male sitting MLAs and 5 MPs.
Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik, known for springing up surprises, Tuesday evening suddenly entered into the House and announced that his government is pressing for reservation of one- third of the seats in State Assembly and Lok Sabha for women.
It is unlikely that the constitutional provision for reservation for women would come before the 2019 elections. But, Naveen has to implement it at least when he is going to distribute tickets this time round.
There are now 11 women legislators in Odisha Assembly. While the BJD has 10, the BJP has one women MLA. In the 147-member assembly, the BJD has 118 members, while Congress, BJP, independent and CPM have 15, 10, 2 and 1 respectively. One seat is laying vacant due to the resignation of Congress MLA from Koraput Krushna Chandra Sagarai.
To introduce 33% reservation, Naveen has to give as many as 49 seats to women aspirants. Even if he repeats the 10 women MLAs, he has to accommodate another 39 in the list. Moreover, if he decides to offer the 29 seats now hold by opposition members to women, he has to deny tickets to at least 10 sitting male MLAs.
Similarly, out of the 21 Lok Sabha seat, the BJD has 20 including two women members. Rita Taria and Sakuntala Laguri have got elected from Jajpur and Keonjhar Lok Sabha seats in 2014. Even if Naveen will retain Rita and Skuntala, he has to give tickets to 5 women aspirants to score the 33% reservation for women target.
That Naveen is going to deny tickets to sitting MLAs has pressed the panic button in the BJD legislative circle. Now, Naveen has a way to deny ticket to the MLAs. On the pretext of accommodating women, Naveen would easily get rid of undesirable sitting MLAs.
Besides two women ministers, Usha Devi (Chikiti) and Snehagini Churia(Atabira), the list of BJD women law makers include V. Sugyani Kumar Devi(Kabisurya Nagar) , Pramila Mallick(Binjharpur), Dr.Raseswari Panigrahi(Sambalpur), Nandini Devi (Sanakhemundi), Tukuni Sahu(Titlagarh), Seemarani Nayak(Hindol) and Basanti Mallikc(Mohana).
If Naveen decides deny ticket any of these sitting women MLAs, then it would be guess work for everybody to find out, who will be out this time round.
Now the question is who will be the victim of Naveen’s penchant for 33% reservation for women.