Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is a poll mode. It became evident, when he announced that Orissa government would supply 25 kg rice per month at Rs. 2 per kg to all BPL (Below Poverty Line) families in the state. The new announcement will help around 55,55,000 families in Orissa. The families covered under the Antodaya scheme, tribal hostels and the APL families in the Kalahandi-Bolangir-Koraput (KBK) districts will get rice at the same rate. With elections due in early 2009, this sudden development has put the opposition in a tight spot.
According to sources, after announcing a few more populist measures, the CM may recommend the dissolution of the assembly and may go for early elections. With the Congress yet to project a leader as its Chief Ministerial candidate, Naveen is hopeful of winning another term in office. The new announcement has come as a major relief for the poor, who are finding it tough to combat the rising food prices. The government has to bear an additional cost of Rs. 800 crore per year, as a fallout of this announcement.