9 Odisha ministers resign ahead of reshuffle

Nine Odisha ministers on Saturday tendered their resignation paving the way for Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to reshuffle the cabinet.

Sanjay Dasburma, Pranab Prakash Das, Arun Sahoo, Pradeep Panigrahi, Pushpendra Singhdeo, Lal Bihari Himirika, Sudam Marndi, Jogendra Behera and Debi Prasad Mishra have put in their papers.

Finance Minister Pradip Amat is likely to resign from his post on Saturday. He is tipped to become the Speaker in place of Niranjan Pujari, who had resigned from his post on Friday and is likely to be accommodated in the ministy.

Meanwhile, Patnaik expressed hope that the ministerial reshuffle will attribute towards the growth and development of people of Odisha besides strengthening the party.

"I am grateful to a number of ministers who have resigned voluntarily to work for the party. All of us in the party are very grateful to them," he said.

He said the revamp would help the ruling Biju Janata Dal serve the people better.

Patnaik may go in for a cabinet reshuffle on Sunday morning before leaving for New Delhi to attend the meeting on the Maoist threat convened by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on May 8.