Naveen Patnaik invites PM Modi for swearing-in ceremony

Indicating his intention to cultivate cordial relationship with Narendra Modi-led government at the center, Odisha chief minister and Biju Janata Dal president Naveen Patnaik has invited Prime Minister-elect Narendra Modi, besides leaders of different political parties to his swearing-in ceremony scheduled to be held in Bhubaneswar tomorrow. Patnaik will take oath as the chief minister for fifth time in a row.

“A special message has been sent to Delhi to invite the PM for the swearing-in ceremony of the  new government in Odisha,” people familiar with the development said. Invitations have also been sent to leaders of different political parties in the state. However, the invite to the PM is significant as Patnaik had during poll campaign given an open invitation to Modi.

Patnaik at an election meeting at Basta under Balasore Lok Sabha constituency had invited Modi to his swearing-in, after Modi in a public meeting announced that he would again visit Odisha to attend the swearing-in ceremony of the next BJP government in the state. Modi had also predicted that Patnaik’s government will be out of power after the May 23 poll result announcement.

In his reply, Patnaik had said, “BJD has already secured majority in the Assembly by the end of the third-phase of polling. I humbly invite him (Modi) to attend the oath-taking ceremony of the new BJD government.”

Apart from the prime minister, the state government has also invited captains of industries, members of women self-help groups and others to the ceremony. More than 5,000 people will attend Patnaik’s swearing-in.

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