Bhubaneswar: The Odisha high court Friday directed to hold fresh elections to the Ward No. 18 of Bhubaneswar Muncipal Corporation within two months while declaring the elections of sitting corporator , Sukanti Subudhi, null and void.

Justice Biswanath Rath of the high court annulled the 2014 election of Sukanti on the ground of mismatch in her name and educational data mentioned in her nomination paper and accompanying affidavits. The court, while disposing of the appeal of Punam Parida, who had contested against Sukanti unsccessully, had quashed the Khurda district judge of January 2015.

The elections, which is going to be held in September next, if the court order prevailed, the ruling BJD will have  another  opportunity to tell the asserting BJP party that Naveen is the darling of the voters. The recent poll to one of the zilla parisad seats in Nuapada district  had given a chance the BJD to prove its supremacy in electoral politics. Not only it won the election with handsome margin but also pushed the BJP to the third position. The Congress finished second in the election.

The saffron party which was basking under the glory of doing some dent in the Panchyat elections, find it difficult to digest the defeat. What was painful for the party was that the Congress emerged as the second favorite with the voters. And what was humiliating was that the zilla parisad seat falls in the district of the BJP state president Basant Panda.
The fight for Ward 18 in Bhubaneswar city is definitely going to be fierce. For, the result would be an indication what is going to be outcome of the urban elections in the state, scheduled to be held in 2018. The BJD would try its best to win the elections to prove that in urban centres the party’s popularity is in tact. On the other hand, the BJP will try to establish that are in the race for the power and not the Congress.