BJP appoints Baijayant Panda party’s national vice president and spokesperson

New Delhi: Odisha leader Baijayant Jay Panda, who joined the BJP last week, was Friday appointed the party’s vice president and spokesperson.

BJP president Amit Shah’s decision to give him an important organisational responsibility signals the importance the party has given him as it looks to improve its tally in the eastern state during the coming Lok Sabha polls. Panda, who owns an Odisha-based media group, had quit the Biju Janata Dal last year and also resigned from his Lok Sabha membership following his suspension from the regional party headed by state’s Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.

Assembly polls in the state will be held simultaneously with the Lok Sabha elections. The BJP had won only one of its 21 Lok Sabha seats in 2014 but is hopeful of putting up a much better show thereafter it emerged as the main challenger to the BJD in the local polls.

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