By Bizodisha Bureau, Bhubaneswar, August 9, 2018: Odisha chief minister and the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) chief Naveen Patnaik is leaving no stone unturned to make smooth riding in the 2019 general election in the state by planning to form Odisha Vidhan Parishad (Odisha Legislative Council).

Sources said, the BJD government is likely to bring a resolution for the formation of Vidhan Parishad in the upcoming monsoon session of the state legislative assembly apparently to keep the party aspirants together to face a bitter fight in the next polls.

Like the Rajya Sabha, members of the Vidhan Parishad serve six-year-long terms, with one-third of members moving out every two years. The members are elected by different groups, such as local bodies, Vidhan Sabha members, while some are nominated by the state’s Governor.

The panel formed by the government in 2015 to study the feasibility and procedure for a Vidhan Sabha has submitted its report last week to the chief minister Naveen Patnaik recommending formation of Vidhan Parishad. However, the state government has not made details of the report public.

If the Vidhan Parishad is formed, Odisha will have a bicameral legislature like Karnataka, Maharashtra, Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar, Andhra Pradesh and Telengana.

However, the main opposition Congress is opposed to the idea of having such a council as it would serve no public purpose, according to the Leader of Opposition in the assembly and Congress leader Narasingha Mishra. “Congress is always opposed to the formation of a Vidhan Parishad and will oppose the bill to create one such when it is presented in the assembly. If the state’s Vidhan Sabha cannot solve problems, what will Vidhan Parishad do? He quipped.

Article 169 of the Indian Constitution has the provision for the Parliament to bring legislation for the creation of such a Council in a State having no such Council, if the Legislative Assembly of the State passes a resolution, by a majority of the total membership of the Assembly and by a majority of not less than two thirds of the members of the Assembly present and voting. And if the ruling BJD finally zeros in on the Parishad, it has the requisite number to get the Bill passed in the House.

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