A virtual walkover for Sushma SwarajApr 23rd, 2009 | By Elections2009 | Category: Candidate watch
Mahim Pratap Singh
Bhopal: Even as 1.72 crore voters in MP get ready to decide the fate of 13 Lok Sabha seats and 198 candidates on Thursday, BJP star candidate Sushma Swaraj stands virtually unchallenged in Vidisha, where Congress candidate Rajkumar Patel’s nomination has been rejected for not submitting the original copy of his nomination form.
For Ms. Swaraj, whose position was strong even with the Congress candidate around, it is no longer a question of victory or defeat but that of the winning margin. Mr. Patel, on the other hand, has distanced himself from the election process, raising curiosity among observers.
Pitted against heavyweights such as Shivraj Singh and Sundarlal Patwa in the past, Mr. Patel, a wealthy farmer’s son, has been repeatedly used as a pawn, sources inside the Election Office said.
Refraining from making any comments or statements about the elections till Tuesday, Mr. Patel finally appealed to Vidisha voters through a press release, asking them to vote against the BJP. Meanwhile, Congress party workers in Vidisha remain clueless after the party failed to name a new candidate.
Issues take a backseat
At Hoshangabad, it is Shivraj vs Pachauri. Issues have taken a backseat.Incumbent CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan the BJP is pitted against senior Congress leader Suresh Pachauri.
While the former MP from Vidisha, Rampal Singh, a close confidant of Mr. Chouhan, is the BJP candidate and sitting MLA from Tendukheda, Rao Udai Pratap Singh is contesting on the Congress ticket, the actual fight is said to be between the two veterans. It has become a matter of prestige.
In Bhopal, BJP veteran Kailash Joshi is up against the Congress’ Surendra Singh Thakur. Munavvar Kausar is the SP candidate while Ashok Narayan Singh is the BSP contender.
In Chhindwara, Congress veteran Kamal Nath faces BJP’s tribal trump card Maratrao Khavse.