Moquim to Campaign For Party in Dhamnagar By-Poll

Bhubaneswar: Excluded from the star campaigners list of Odisha Congress, beleaguered leader and senior legislator Md Moquim on Saturday said that he will campaign for the party candidate for by-election to Dhamnagar assembly seat in Bhadrak district as a dedicated worker.

Describing himself as a sincere Congress worker, Moquim said it does not make any difference if his name is not included in the list of the party’s star campaigners for the November 3 bypoll.

Star campaigners are chosen taking into account the past performance and experience of leaders and their number is limited, the Cuttack-Barabati MLA said, adding that he will tour Dhamnagar to take part in the campaign as all leaders cannot be made star campaigners.

Congress has fielded Baba Harekrushna Sethi for the by-election. The Congress ‘ 30 star campaigners include Odisha in-charge A Chella Kumar, co-in charge Rudra Raju, OPCC president Sarat Pattanayak, and three former state presidents, Suresh Routray, and Tara Bahinipati.

It may be noted that Moquim, former managing director of Metro Builders, along with three others including former IAS officer Vinod Kumar was awarded 3-year rigorous imprisonment on September 29.  The court found them guilty of criminal misconduct, forgery, cheating and criminal conspiracy and obtaining pecuniary advantage for Metro Builders Pvt Ltd by releasing funds in the guise of loans meant for the rural poor.

Later, in a major relief to Moquim, the Orissa High Court last week stayed the three-year jail sentence awarded to him by a vigilance court in a loan fraud case. Earlier, Moquim moquim was in news after he voted for NDA Presidential candidate Draupadi Murmu, despite Odisha Congress unit’s decision to vote in support of Yashwant Sinha.

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