New Delhi, Mar 8 : BJP president Amit Shah on Friday appointed Baijant Jay Panda, a former BJD lawmaker who joined the saffron party recently, as national vice-president and spokesman of the party.
This appointment comes into immediate effect, the party said on Friday. Panda, who won the Kendrapara seat consecutively in 2009 and 2014, is now likely to contest the fast approaching Lok Sabha polls from the same seat - but now on BJP ticket, sources said.
During both the previous elections the victory margins against Congress nominees have been more than two lakh - but the same was largely attributed to mass appeal of the BJD supremo and the state Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.
Therefore, in more ways than one, political observers feel, both the BJP's support base and the personal voters' appeal of Mr Panda will be under test. (UNI)