Rajasthan election result 2018: Congress faces rebel threat in Barmer

The exit polls may have given an edge to the Congress in Rajasthan but the scenario is different in Barmer district where the party is facing a tough challenge from its own rebel candidates at five of the seven seats. In the rest of the two seats, Hanuman Beniwal’s Rashtriya Loktantrik Party (RLP) seems to be disturbing the poll equations.

Although the pollsters’ premonition shows the odds are in favour of the Congress in many regions, political analysts and most of the survey agencies are not indicating victory for Congress at any of the seats in Barmer.

This time, five of total seven assembly constituencies in Barmer district have rebel candidates in fray. These candidates had turned rebel after the party ignored their claims. These five seats are Barmer, Sheo, Chohtan, Siwana and Pachpadra. However, two Congress rebel candidates have joined Rashtriya Loktantrik Party and are in fray from Sheo and Chohtan.

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The Dalit community had formed SC/ST Ekta Manch to seek Congress ticket at Barmer assembly seat. when denied, they fielded Dr Rahul Bamniya as an independent candidate. Here Congress has fielded sitting MLA Mewaram Jain, who is already facing tough challenge from BJP candidate and sitting BJP MP Sonaram Choudhary.

According to political analyst Manoj Gujar, there are approximately 50,000 votes of Dalit community in Barmer. Gujar said that considering the road show of Rahul Bamniya, it would not be a big surprise if Congress gets a big jolt at this seat.

Apart from Barmer, Congress leader Udaram Meghwal turned rebel at Sheo assembly seat. He had staked his claim but after party rejection, he joined Rashtriya Loktantrik Party and contested the polls. Apart from denting in Congress traditional Dalit vote bank, it seems that due to Hanuman Beniwal, he had got good support from Jat community which favoured Meghwal instead BJP’s Rajput and Congress Muslim candidate.

Similar situation prevails at Chohtan seat. Chohtan is reserved for SC community. At this seat Congress leader Surtaram Meghwal staked his claim. But Congress repeated former legislature Padmaram Meghwal. Miffed with ticket refusal, Surtaram joined Rashtriya Loktantrik Party and contested election. Political observers expect that Surtaram’s dent may change the game for Congress in favour of the BJP.

At Siwana seat Balaram Choudhary was strong hopeful of Congress. But party refused his claim after which he contested the election as independent candidate. Here the party has fielded a new face that didn’t go down well with many of the party leaders. Many of them opposed the Congress move and joined Choudhary instead. At this seat, Congress has been toppled by the saffron party for the last two elections, but with Choudhary in fray, there are more chances that the BJP might get third time lucky.

At Pachpadra seat, two Mali community had staked claim but the party banked on former MLA Madan Prajapat that led to the community to field its own candidate. Apart from this, Congress rebel candidate Hukam Singh has also contested election from this seat, making it a troublesome ride for Congress and paving a smooth way for the BJP.

At two other seats Baytoo and Gudamalani, candidates of Rashtriya Loktantrik Party has brought tough challenge for the Congress. From Baytoo, Congress national secretary and former MP Harish Choudhary and from Gudamalani, veteran leader and former revenue minister Hemaram Choudhary are in fray.

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First Published: Dec 11, 2018 09:34 IST

Article source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/rajasthan-elections/rajasthan-assembly-election-congress-faces-rebel-threat-in-barmer/story-ZuloX84btJbHhD2YhqRvnJ.html


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