Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has said he never feels tired while working for people. The video clip of the interview of the chief minister by his private secretary V K Pandian has gone viral in social media.
Sources said the video was recorded at a Mumbai hotel on Thursday before 75-year-old Patnaik returned to Odisha after his three-day visit to the country’s financial capital. On the previous day, Patnaik had a busy schedule.
The Chief Minister had attended as many as 18 meetings, including one-to-one discussions with industrialists such as Anand Mahindra, Anil Agarwal, Kumar Mangalam Birla, and others.
When Pandian, a 2000 batch IAS officer who is considered to be a close aide of the Chief Minister, asked him if he was tired after attending 18 meetings from morning till night on the previous day, Patnaik replied, “No, I was not tired, No.”
“When you are working for people, you do not really feel tired,” the Chief Minister said, to which Pandian, also the 5T secretary, admitted, “That’s really inspiring for all of us”. During his Mumbai visit, Patnaik invited investors to be partners in the state’s transformational journey and attend the Make In Odisha Conclave, 2022 from November 30 to December 4 in Bhubaneswar.
The message in the 25-second video is considered to be a reply to critics, including BJP leaders, who often accuse Patnaik of not attending office at the state secretariat and also not listening to the grievances of people since 2020 following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The BJP has vowed to end the BJD rule in Odisha after the 2024 elections. The regional party has been in power in the coastal state for 22 years and Patnaik is the longest-serving chief minister of Odisha. Leader of Opposition J N Mishra of the BJP said that “there is nothing new in this type of video’.
A series of videos had also gone viral before the 2019 elections, showing Patnaik exercising in sports attire. The videos were released to give a message to the people that Patnaik was physically and mentally fit, he said.
(With PTI inputs)