Tathagata Satpathy, a four-time BJD MP from Dhenkanal in Orissa, has been unsparing lately in his criticism of the Narendra Modi government over the Aadhaar project. He tweeted up a storm this week, alleging that a party colleague was trying to swing a deal with the BJP and split the BJD. He didn’t name anybody, but Jay Panda, another high-profile BJD member, reacted sarcastically. As the row got political circles talking, Satpathy spoke to Bula Devi on a wide range of issues.
You tweeted that BJP was trying to divide your party. One of your own colleagues was helping swing the deal, you said. Who did you mean when you said this?
I don’t want to speak about my tweets. But one should mark my last word ‘Ha’ in that tweet. I only wanted to flush out critters. Nothing more.
You have flagged that Orissa assembly polls may be advanced, and held with upcoming elections in other states (Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan). Are you worried that mood in the BJP-led states can influence election outcome in Orissa too?
I am not worried. For, (chief minister) Naveen Patnaik’s popularity is still intact. I was thinking about it aloud and I tweeted. I found it ridiculous when our PM suggested holding simultaneous elections. Does he understand the financial implications by conducting all elections together? He wants to advance the Gujarat elections for obvious reasons.
The Finance Bill 2017 has provisions for political funding. Amendments were brought in as money bills. What do you have to say about it?
The finance minister had, in his speech, said that 70 per cent of funding of political parties was done by cash and the rest by cheque or similar means. It means only 30...