Senior Congress leader and former Odisha minister Padmalochan Panda joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Sunday.
Mr Panda joined the party in presence of Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and BJP state president Basant Panda. He had resigned from the Congress on October 7.
The former Congress leader is a three-time Members of Legislative Assembly (MLA) from Simulia assembly segment in Odisha's Balasore district.
Besides Mr Panda, Congress leader Subhankar Mohapatra along with other party workers also joined the BJP.
On the occasion, Mr Pradhan hit out at Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and said that the ruling government has failed to provide employment opportunities to the youth.
He even accused the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) government of plundering the resources of the state and forcing people to move to other states for job opportunities.
This comes ahead of forthcoming assembly polls in Odisha which are due for next year.
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