Watch: After Heated Campaign, PM And Naveen Patnaik Greet Each Other At Swearing-In

The BJD and the BJP were reportedly in talks for an alliance ahead of the elections.

The BJP won 78 of Odisha's 147 Assembly seats.


The rare acrimony between former allies BJP and the BJD witnessed during the Lok Sabha and Odisha Assembly elections seemed to have been dialled down on Wednesday when Prime Minister Narendra Modi and former chief minister Naveen Patnaik exchanged pleasantries during Mohan Majhi's swearing-in ceremony.

A video showed PM Modi and Mr Patnaik - who lost the Odisha chief minister's chair after 24 years and was invited to Mr Majhi's oath-taking ceremony - speaking to each other and shaking hands before the Prime Minister moved on and greeted Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, one of the state's tallest BJP leaders. 

After a reported alliance between the BJP and the BJD fell through, the lead-up to the Lok Sabha and Odisha Assembly elections, which were held simultaneously, saw the two parties launching strong attacks at each other. PM Modi and Mr Patnaik also took jibes at each other, which was a rarity because the leaders were known to share a good relationship and the BJD had supported the BJP on several occasions in Parliament, including in passing key bills. 

During the campaign, PM Modi had dared Naveen Patnaik to name all the districts of Odisha and their district headquarters without referring to any notes as a test of his knowledge of the state. The then chief minister had hit back and reminded the PM of all his "forgotten promises".

The BJD chief had also accused the PM of ignoring the "brave sons of Odisha" for the Bharat Ratna, including his father and former chief minister Biju Patnaik, as well as the Odia language.

Ahead of the elections, PM Modi had said that a BJP chief minister would take oath in the state on June 10 and the BJD had scoffed at the statement.

"Odisha's fate is about to change. The government is changing. I have said that the expiry date of the current government of Odisha is June 4 (counting day). And, on June 10, BJP's Chief Minister will take oath in Odisha," the Prime Minister had said.

Mr Majhi took oath as the first BJP chief minister in Odisha, after the party won 78 of the state's 147 Assembly seats, ending Mr Patnaik's five-term rule since 2000. The party also won 20 of the state's 21 Lok Sabha constituencies, reducing the regional behemoth to zero.