Former Minister Damodar Rout passes away

Former Minister Damodar Rout passes away

Bhubaneswar: Damodar Rout, a former Minister and senior  leader of the Biju Janata Dal (BJD), passed away in the early hours of Friday morning while receiving treatment at a private hospital. He was 82 years old.

Rout had been grappling with age-related health issues and suffered a cardiac arrest on March 18, leading to his hospitalization. According to family sources, his condition deteriorated significantly, and he was declared ‘brain dead.’

A seven-time Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA), Rout had served in the Cabinets of both Naveen Patnaik and his father, Biju Patnaik. He represented the Ersama constituency five times and Paradeep twice.

Despite his long-standing association with the BJD, Rout was expelled from the party in September 2018 due to perceived “anti-party” activities. He subsequently joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) shortly before the 2019 elections but was unsuccessful in his bid for re-election from the Balikuda-Ersama constituency.

Following his departure from the BJP, Rout resigned from the party. However, in January of this year, the BJD, while he was undergoing treatment, revoked his expulsion citing “sympathy grounds.”