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Paranjoy Guha Thakurta

Chasing His Father's Dreams

Inside Story of Odisha's Longest Serving Chief Minister

Author(s): Biswajit Mohanty
Publisher: Paranjoy
Pages: 450
Published: January 2017

Chasing His Father's Dreams is a comprehensive exposition of the circumstances under which Naveen Patnaik, the founder and leader of the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) political party who is now in his fourth term as Chief Minister of the eastern Indian state of Odisha, rose to power. Biswajit Mohanty deploys conversations with local people, politicians, activists and journalists as well as extensive research conducted using the Right to Information Act to analyse the reasons for Patnaik's immense popularity over the years despite the fact of his unfamiliarity with the Odia language necessitating a certain degree of alienation from the masses.

In this book, divided into four sections, Mohanty critically assesses the nature of the progress that has occurred under Patnaik's leadership for 16 years and examines in detail the elections to the state legislative assembly from 2000, allegations of corruption against corporate conglomerates such as Vedanta Resources plc and socio-economic issues related to mining, health, education and rural welfare in the state.

While pointing out how Patnaik has attracted criticism because his government has been slow to act on checking rising inequity, stark poverty, corruption within the ruling party, the mining mafia, mass unemployment, displacement of project-affected people and suicides by farmers on account of the continuing agricultural crises in Odisha, Mohanty nonetheless anticipates another 'sweeping victory' for the BJD in the next elections to the state assembly that are due in 2019.

Date posted: October 11, 2017Last modified: October 11, 2017Posted byParanjoy Guha Thakurta
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