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I was a Pallbearer at Biju Uncle’s Funeral: Baijayant

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ONI Bureau: While the Biju Patnaik Birth Centenary Committee invited everyone else, including Dharmendra Pradhan, Jual Oram, BB Harichandan, Narasingha Mishra, Prafulla Ghadei, Bijoy Mohapatra and Dilip Ray to the launching of the book ‘The Tall MAn Biju Patnaik’, they chose to ignore Baijayant Panda, who family remained close to late Biju Patnaik for decades.

And, Jay Panda did not mince words to express his pain and anguish. He went to Puri to pay obeseince at Lord Jagannath Temple and then went to Biju Samadhi at Swarga Dwar. Panda sat there for a while and did silent prayer. He was a bit emotional and almost in tears while paying his tributes to the late leader.

He later tweeted two photos of 1997 and 2018 – one at Biju Babu’s funeral and other one at his Samadhi today.

“At Puri’s Swargadwar cremation ground, then & now: L: April 18, 1997, at my idol Biju Patnaik’s funeral. I was one of the few pallbearers R: This morning, same spot, in silent contemplation & prayer If Biju uncle was alive, he’d have appreciated my speaking the blunt truth”.

Yes, he carried Biju Babu’s dead body on his shoulders along with Naveen Patnaik then. Both families shared close bonding and looked inseparable just like the Gandhis and Bachchans. Probably, the ‘Dirty Politics’ played by outsiders forced them part ways today.

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