Lok Sabha Election 2019, Odisha profile: BJD prepares to battle dual-pronged Congress, BJP attack; Puri, Cuttack key seats

Odisha, which has 21 Lok Sabha seats, goes to poll in four phases starting on 11 April. While four seats go to polls in the first phase, five seats will be voting on 18 April. In the final two phases, which take place on 23 and 29 April respectively, six seats each will be voting to elect their next representatives.

In the last Lok Sabha elections, Odisha returned 20 Biju Janata Dal MPs to Parliament. The lone Bharatiya Janata Party MP elected from Odisha was Tribal Affairs minister Jual Oram. The Congress drew a blank.

Odisha will also be electing members of its Legislative Assembly simultaneously. The Odisha Assembly consists of 147 members. In the last elections, the Biju Janata Dal registered an emphatic victory by winning 117 seats in the Assembly. The Congress won 16 seats while the BJP could only register a victory in 10 seats.

Odisha will be witnessing a three-cornered fight this election season. The Congress under state unit president Niranjan Patnaik and the BJP under the leadership of Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan will face-off with Naveen Patnaik, who is running for the chief ministership for the fifth time in a row.

The Congress and the BJP are banking on anti-incumbency factor against the two-decade-old BJD regime. For BJP, Odisha provides an opportunity to improve its tally in the Parliament as well as strengthen its machinery in the state, where it intends to win 120 seats in the Assembly.

While endowed with an abundance of natural resources, Odisha continues to suffer from “resource curse”. Many of its districts continue to languish on socio-economic parameters. Nevertheless, Odisha is a unique polity where caste and religion do not act as a major electoral factor. This is in contrast to the other parts of India where caste and religion influence elections.

Here is a brief look at the Lok Sabha constituencies that go to polls in the coming weeks:

 1. Bargarh Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 1

Total Electors: 11,23,301 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 7,51,140

Female Electors: 6,79,577

Assembly Constituencies: Padampur, Bijepur, Bargarh, Attabira, Bhatli, Brajarajnagar, Jharsuguda

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. The constituency came into existence only in 2008.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections:  In the 2009 elections, the constituency was won by Sanjay Bhoi of the Congress. In the last elections, Prabhas Kumar Singh of the BJD won the seat.

Demography: Part of the economically backward Western Odisha region, the Bargarh Lok Sabha constituency is largely rural in the landscape, with a significant number of tribal and Scheduled Caste population. As per reports, over one-fifth of the population belong to the Scheduled Castes. The major caste groups are Ganda, followed by Dewar and Dhoba. Among the Scheduled Tribes, Saora, Binjhal and Gond are the dominant communities.

2. Sundargarh Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 2

Total Electors: 14,10,532 (2014 estimates)

 Lok Sabha Election 2019, Odisha profile: BJD prepares to battle dual-pronged Congress, BJP attack; Puri, Cuttack key seats

Tribals constitute half of the population in this reserved constituency. Image credit Rajazwitterion/Wikimedia Commons

Male Electors: 7,18,689

Female Electors: 6,91,843

Assembly Constituencies: Sundargarh, Talsara, Rajgangpur, Biramitrapur, Rourkela, Raghunathpali, Bonai

Reserved: Yes. For Scheduled Tribes

Delimited: No

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Union Tribal Affairs Jual Oram has represented the seat since 1998, except between 2009 and 2014, when two-time chief minister Hemananda Biswal represented it.

Demography: Tribals constitute half of the population in this reserved constituency. The district of Sundargarh covers the entire area of the Lok Sabha constituency. Bordering Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh, Sundargarh is more urban in nature compared to other constituencies. However, it also is one of the 19 districts receiving funds from the Backward Regions Grant Fund Programme (BRGF).

3. Sambalpur Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 3

Total Electors: 12,97,098 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 6,69,036

Female Electors: 6,28,062

Assembly Constituencies: Kuchinda, Rengali, Sambalpur, Rairakhol, Deogarh, Chhendipada, Athmallik

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. Three constituencies of Sambhalpur went to Bargarh, while two constituencies from defunct Deogarh constituency became part of it.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: In 1998, 1999 and 2004 elections, Prasanna Acharya of the BJD won the seat. In the 2009 polls, Amarnath Pradhan of the Congress won the seat only to lose it in the next election to BJD’s Nagendra Pradhan.

Demography: Sambalpur is considered the political nerve-centre of Western Odisha, a region which is considered a traditional BJP bastion. The eponymous Lok Sabha constituency is spread across Anugul, Debagarh, Jharsuguda and Sambalpur districts. While not a reserved seat, the constituency has a sizeable number of tribal and Schedule Castes voters, who together form little less than 50 percent of the total electorate.

4. Keonjhar Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 4

Total Electors: 13,46,683 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 6,91,369

Female Electors: 6,55,314

Assembly Constituencies: Telkoi, Ghasipura, Anandpur, Patana, Keonjhar, Champua, Karanjia

Reserved: Yes. For Scheduled Tribes

Delimited: Yes. In 2008. Karanjia Assembly constituency of Mayurbhanj district was added.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Ananta Nayak won two consecutive elections in 1999 and 2004. In the 2009 elections, Yashbant Narayan Singh Laguri of the BJD won the seat. His wife Sakuntala Laguri won the seat in 2014 polls.

Demography: Keonjhar constituency covers the whole district of Keonjhar as well as one constituency of Mayurbhanj district. The constituency is dominated by tribals who form nearly half of the electorate. Bathudi, Bhuyan, Bhumij, Gond, Ho, Juang, Kisan, Kora, Munda, Oraon, Santal and Sounti are the main tribes found in this area.

5. Mayurbhanj Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 5

Total Electors: 13,27,555 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 6,70,100

Female Electors: 6,57,455

Assembly Constituencies: Jashipur, Saraskana, Rairangpur, Bangriposi, Udala, Baripada, Morada

Reserved: Yes. For Scheduled Tribes

Delimited: Yes. Before 2008, there was also a constituency called Kuliana, which now ceased to exist.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: In the 1999 elections, Salkhan Murmu of the BJP won from Mayurbhanj. In the next election, Sudam Marandi of the JMM won the seat. The BJD has been winning the seat since 2009. Rama Chandra Hansdah defeated BJP’s Nepol Murmu by a margin of 1.2 Lakh votes in the 2014 elections.

Demography: Mayurbhanj Lok Sabha constituency is dominated by tribals, who constitute at least 57 percent of the total population. This makes Mayurbhanj the most tribal-dominated district in the state. Santhals, Kolha, Bathudi and Bhumija, Mankadia, Khadia, Bhuyan, Juangas and Lodh are some of the major tribes found in the political landscape of Mayurbhanj.

6. Balasore Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 6

Total Electors: 13,66,218 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 7,09,342

Female Electors: 6,56,876

Assembly Constituencies: Badasahi, Jaleswar, Bhograi, Basta, Balasore, Remuna, Nilagiri

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. In 2008.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Kharabela Swain won the seat thrice in a row between 1998 and 2004, before losing to former Union minister Srikant Jena in the 2009 elections. In the 2014 elections, Jena lost to BJD’s Rabindra Kumar Jena.

Demography: The constituency of Balasore roughly covers the district of Balasore, which lies on the northern end of the state and borders West Bengal. The district is largely rural, except for Balasore, which is the largest city in North Odisha.

7. Bhadrak Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 7

Total Electors: 14,69,498 (2014 estimates)

Bhadrak is one of the few constituencies in Odisha, where Muslims form a significant chunk of the population. Deepak das/Wikimedia Commons

Bhadrak is one of the few constituencies in Odisha, where Muslims form a significant chunk of the population. Deepak das/Wikimedia Commons

Male Electors: 7,74,566

Female Electors: 6,94,932

Assembly Constituencies: Soro, Simulia, Bhandaripokhari, Bhadrak, Basudevpur, Dhamnagar, Chandabali

Reserved: Yes. For Scheduled Castes

Delimited: Yes. In 2008.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Arjun Charan Sethi of the BJD has been the sitting MP since 1998.

Demography: Bhadrak is one of the few constituencies in Odisha, where Muslims form a significant chunk of the population. In fact, Bhadrak city is estimated to have at least one-third Muslim population. The city was in the news a few years ago for incidents of communal violence. Additionally, Scheduled Castes comprise at least 20 percent of the population in Bhadrak.

8. Jajpur Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 8

Total Electors: 13,03,733 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 6,96,385

Female Electors: 6,07,348

Assembly Constituencies: Binjharpur, Bari, Barachana, Dharmasala, Jajpur, Korei, Sukinda

Reserved: Yes. For Scheduled Castes

Delimited: Yes. Until the 2008 delimitation, Bari Assembly segment was called Bari-Derabisi.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: The BJD has held this seat since 1999. While Jagannath Mullick won the seat in the 1999 polls, Mohan Jena retained the seat for the party in the 2004 and 2009 elections. In the last elections, Rita Tarai defeated her nearest Congress rival by over 3.2 Lakh votes.

Demography: The constituency has a significant chunk of Scheduled Castes, who comprise over 25 percent of the population. Over 92 percent of the population lives in rural areas, making it a predominantly rural constituency. According to local reports, farmer distress remains a major issue in this constituency, which will also determine the electoral fortunes of the candidates.

 9. Dhenkanal Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 9

Total Electors: 13,63,467 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 7,22,328

Female Electors: 6,41,139

Assembly Constituencies: Dhenkanal, Parjanga, Kamakshyanagar, Hindol, Angul, Talcher, Pallahara

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. In 2008. Talcher and Pallahara Assembly seats of the erstwhile Deogarh Lok Sabha constituency were merged with Dhenkanal. On the other hand, Athmallick and Chhendipada Assembly seats, which were part of Dhenkanal Lok Sabha constituency were given to Sambalpur Lok Sabha constituency.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Barring the 1999 elections, when veteran Congressman and former Union minister KP Singh Deo won, the seat has remained with BJD leader Tathagata Satpathy.

Demography: A largely rural constituency, only about 16 percent of the population lives in urban areas, as per the 2011 Census. The district is inhabited by a number of castes, out of which Chasa, Khandayat, Karan, Brahmin, Gouda, Paika, and Kumbhar are important. The Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes together form over 30 percent of the population.

10. Bolangir Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 10

Total Electors: 15,63,025 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 8,14,968

Female Electors: 748,057

Assembly Constituencies: Birmaharajpur, Sonepur, Loisingha, Patnagarh, Balangir, Titlagarh, Kantabanji

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. In 2008. Saintala Vidhan Sabha seat ceased to exist while Birmaharajpur became part of Bolangir Lok Sabha constituency.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Sangeeta Kumari Singh Deo won thrice on a BJP ticket between 1998 and 2004, before losing twice in a row to Kalikesh Narayan Singh Deo of the BJD.

Demography: Bolangir is known for being one of the political dens of the influential Singh Deo family. Bolangir is one of the most socio-economically backward constituencies in India. It is part of Western Odisha, which has been demanding a separate state called Koshal. There is a significant population of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the constituency.

11. Kalahandi Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 11

Total Electors: 14,74,135 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 7,50,694

Female Electors: 7,23,441

Assembly Constituencies: Nuapada, Khariar, Lanjigarh (ST), Junagarh, Dharmgarh, Bhawanipatna (SC), Narla

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. In 2008.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Bikram Keshari Deo won the seat thrice in a row between 1998 and 2004. In the 2009 elections, Bhakta Charan Das of the Congress won the seat. In the 2014 elections, he lost the seat to Arka Keshari Deo of the BJD by over 60,000 votes.

Demography: The constituency, which covers the district of Kalahandi, earned notoriety for the term “Kalahandi syndrome”. In fact, a 2008 report put this Lok Sabha constituency in the bottom five for socio-economic and infrastructural development. As per the 2011 Census, Schedule Caste (SC) constitutes 18.2 percent while Schedule Tribe (ST) were 28.5 percent of total population in Kalahandi district.

12. Nabarangpur Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 12

Total Electors: 12,97,210 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 6,45,875

Female Electors: 6,51,335

Assembly Constituencies: Umerkote, Jharigam, Nabarangpur, Dabugam, Kotpad, Malkangiri, Chitrakonda

Reserved: Yes. For Scheduled Tribes

Delimited: Yes. In 2008. Jharigam Vidhan Sabha seat came into the existence while Kodinga Assembly segment ceased to exist.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: In 2014 elections, Balbhadra Majhi of the BJD won the seat. He defeated Pradeep Kumar Manjhi who had represented the seat between 2009 and 2014. Between 1999 and 2009, BJP’s Parsuram Majhi held the seat.

Demography: Part of Southern Odisha, Telugu voters play a significant role in at least two of the seven constituencies in Nabarangpur. It is a tribally dominated constituency, with over half of the electorate belonging to over 10 tribes.

13. Kandhamal Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 13

Total Electors: 11,43,602 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 5,82,340

Female Electors: 5,61,262

Assembly Constituencies: Baliguda, G Udayagiri, Phulbani, Kantamal, Boudh, Daspalla, Bhanjanagar

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. The constituency came into existence after delimitation in 2008.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: BJD’s Rudramadhab Ray won the seat in the 2009 elections. In the 2014 elections, BJD’s Hemendra Chandra Singh won the seat but died just three months into his term. In the ensuing by-poll, BJD candidate Pratyusha Rajeshwari Singh won the seat.

Demography: The constituency came into the spotlight due to the riots that took place in the aftermath of the murder of a VHP leader in 2008, which ultimately led to the breakup between BJD and BJP. Kandhas, considered the original tribal inhabitants of the area, and the Panos, a Scheduled Caste community, are influential in the constituency.

14. Cuttack Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 14

Cuttack is a BJD citadel, having won all elections here since 1998. Image credit Biswarup Ganguly/Wikimedia Commons

Cuttack is a BJD citadel, having won all elections here since 1998. Image credit Biswarup Ganguly/Wikimedia Commons

Total Electors: 13,71,617 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 7,31,918

Female Electors: 6,39,699

Assembly Constituencies: Baramba, Banki, Athagarh, Barabati-Cuttack, Choudwar-Cuttack, Cuttack Sadar, Khandapada

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. After delimitation, Barabati-Cuttack Assembly segment came into existence. On the other hand, Choudwar Assembly segment was abolished and replaced by Choudwar-Cuttack.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Bhartruhari Mahtab of the BJD is the sitting MP since 1998.

Demography: Cuttack is a BJD citadel, having won all elections here since 1998. At least three of the seven constituencies Barabati-Cuttack, Choudwar-Cuttack, Cuttack Sadar – are considered urban in nature. The rest are dominated by rural voters.

15. Kendrapara Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 15

Total Electors: 15,55,444 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 8,28,491

Female Electors: 7,26,953

Assembly Constituencies: Salipur, Mahanga, Patkura, Kendrapara, Aul, Rajanagar, Mahakalapada

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. In 2008

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Newly inducted BJP leader Jay Panda represented Kendrapara between 2009 and 2018. Before him, Archana Nayak and Prabhat Kumar Samantaray of the BJD represented the constituency in the 14th and 13th Lok Sabha respectively.

Demography: Located in the Central Plain Zone of Odisha, Kendrapara is primarily a rural constituency, with over 70 percent of the population dependent on agriculture and other primary sector jobs. At least 21 percent of the population in Kendrapara belong to the Scheduled Castes.

16. Jagatsinghpur Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 16

Total Electors: 14,99,673 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 7,97,923

Female Electors: 7,01,750

Assembly Constituencies: Niali, Paradeep, Tirtol, Balikuda-Erasama, Jagatsinghpur, Kakatpur, Nimapara

Reserved: Yes. For Scheduled Castes

Delimited: Yes. Before the 2008 delimitation, this was an open seat.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: BJD has won the seat three times in the last four elections. Trilochan Kanungo won the seat in 1999 elections, while Brahmananda Panda won in the next election. In 2009 election, Bibhu Prasad Tarai of the CPI won the seat. But in 2014, Tarai as a Congress candidate lost to BJD’s Kulamani Samal.

Demography: The constituency, situated across Jagatsinghpur, Puri and Cuttack districts, is rural in nature, with some estimates placing the rural population at 90 percent. A reserved constituency, nearly 22 percent of the population in Jagatsinghpur belongs to the Scheduled Castes, as per the 2011 Census estimates.

17. Puri Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 17

Total Electors: 14,04,581 (2014 estimates)

Famed for its Jagannath temple, Puri is a significant pilgrimage centre for Hindus. Sandip Sarkar/Wikimedia Commons

Famed for its Jagannath temple, Puri is a significant pilgrimage centre for Hindus. Sandip Sarkar/Wikimedia Commons

Male Electors: 7,42,939

Female Electors: 6,61,642

Assembly Constituencies: Puri, Brahmagiri, Satyabadi, Pipili, Chilika, Ranpur, Nayagarh

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. In 2008. Nayagarh Assembly segment added to Puri Lok Sabha constituency.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Pinaki Misra is the incumbent MP since 2009. Before him, BJD’s Braja Kishore Tripathy won thrice in a row.

Demography: Famed for its Jagannath temple, Puri is a significant pilgrimage centre for Hindus. The constituency is overwhelmingly Hindu, with over 96 percent of the population belonging to the religion. The importance of the constituency could be gauged by the earlier speculations about Prime Minister Narendra Modi fighting elections from the temple town.

18. Bhubaneswar Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 18

Total Electors: 15,27,768 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 8,35,850

Female Electors: 6,91,918

Assembly Constituencies: Jayadev, Bhubaneswar Central (Madhya), Bhubaneswar North (Uttar), Ekamra-Bhubaneswar, Jatni, Begunia, Khurda

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. After delimitation, Bhubaneswar Assembly segment was divided into two new seats: Bhubaneswar Central and Bhubaneswar North.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Prasanna Kumar Patasani is the incumbent MP since 1998.

Demography: The constituency covers the state capital as well as the neighbouring Khorda district, which is considered the most urbanised region in Odisha. Areas under the state capital have an urban profile while Assembly segments like Jatni, Begunia, Jaydev and Khurda are largely rural in nature.

19. Aska Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 19

Total Electors: 14,08,780 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 7,50,999

Female Electors: 6,57,781

Assembly Constituencies: Polasara, Kabisuryanagar, Khallikote, Aska, Surada, Sanakhemundi, Hinjili

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. Polsara and Sanakhemundi were newly created Assembly segments after delimitation.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: This is a BJD bastion. Incumbent chief minister Naveen Patnaik won the seat in 1998 and 1999 elections. In the 2000 by-poll, Kumudini Patnaik won the seat. In the 2014 elections, Ladu Krishna Swain won the seat defeating his nearest Congress rival by 3.1 Lakh votes.

Demography: A pocket borough of the BJD, Aska hosts Hinjli, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s legislative constituency. Situated in the most populated district of Ganjam, one-fifth population belongs to the Scheduled Castes category. Bauri, Dhoba and Dewar are some of the major Scheduled Caste groups in the district.

20. Berhampur Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 20

Total Electors: 13,34,268 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 6,80,089

Female Electors: 6,54,179

Assembly Constituencies: Chatrapur, Gopalpur, Berhampur, Chikiti, Digapahandi, Mohana and Parlakhemundi.

Reserved: No

Delimited: Yes. In 2008. Chatrapur and Mohana became reserved constituencies after delimitation.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: In the 1999 elections, Anadi Charan Sahu won the seat as a BJP candidate. In 2004, Chandra Sekhar Sahu of the Congress won the seat. Since 2009, the seat is held by BJD’s Siddhanta Mahapatra, an actor-turned-politician.

Demography: Bordering Andhra Pradesh, Berhampur is the nerve-centre of Telugu community, which forms 30 to 40 percent of the electorate here. This is evident by the fact it has elected Telugu-speaking candidates in many elections, most notably in 1996, when it elected former prime minister PV Narasimha Rao.

21. Koraput Lok Sabha Constituency

Constituency Number: 21

Total Electors: 13,00,437 (2014 estimates)

Male Electors: 6,29,268

Female Electors: 6,71,169

Assembly Constituencies: Gunupur, Bissam-Cuttack, Rayagada, Lakshmipur, Pottangi, Koraput, Jeypore

Reserved: Yes. For Scheduled Tribes

Delimited: Yes, in 2008.

Results in last four Lok Sabha elections: Giridhar Gamang, the former chief minister, won multiple elections from this constituency. In the 1999 elections, his wife Hema Gamang won the seat as a Congress candidate. In 2009, the former chief minister lost to Jayaram Pangi of the BJD. In the last election, Jhina Hikaka of the BJD defeated Gamang by a margin of 19,000 votes.

Demography: Rich in mineral resources, Koraput is a tribal dominated constituency in Odisha. Over 50 percent of the population is tribal. However, it suffers from resource curse, evident by the fact that it is one of the 250 economically backward districts in India. It also has a literacy rate of only about 50 percent, as per the 2011 Census.

Updated Date: Apr 13, 2019 17:08:05 IST