In Rajasthan, BJP dominates in ticket distribution and campaigning; Congress trails on both fronts

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The Lok Sabha election fever has gripped the desert state of Rajasthan as the mercury touched the 40-degree mark in some districts. Amid this scorching heat, the tours of senior leaders of both the BJP and the Congress are set to rise the political heat in the state.

BJP takes lead in campaigning

The BJP continues to take the lead in the state first in declaring the names of the candidates and now planning rallies of its top brass as against the Congress which was seen lagging behind in announcing the names of its candidates in the state and also planning rallies of its top leadership.

Sounding the poll bugle for the BJP, Union Home Minister Amit Shah is coming to the state capital Jaipur on Sunday afternoon where he will hold a meeting with leaders regarding the elections to be held in the first phase. Shah’s road show is proposed in Sikar in the evening.
After Shah, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a tour of Rajasthan wherein his public meeting is proposed in Kotputli on April 2.

Once the dust settles down after Shah and Modi’s rallies, on April 6 the Congress party is expected to hold a big election meeting in Jaipur on April 6. Congress National President Mallikarjun Kharge, Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi are expected to attend this meeting.
On April 19 the first phase out of 25 Lok Sabha constituencies, 12 will go to polls in the state.

Shah to lead BJP’s poll plan

Amit Shah’s first roadshow will start from Kalyan ji temple in Sikar at 4 pm on Sunday and reach Taparia Garden via various routes of the city including the clock tower. The roadshow in Sikar is being held to extend support to party candidate Sumedhanand Saraswati, who faces a formidable challenge from CPI (M) candidate Amra Ram who is contesting as an INDI Alliance candidate.

Additionally, after arriving in Jaipur in the afternoon Shah is taking the core committee in Jaipur for Lok Sabha constituencies of Jaipur, Dholpur, Nagaur, Dausa, Churu, Karauli and Jhunjhunu. Shah’s tour is also proposed in Jodhpur on April 1 where he will hold the meeting of the Joint Core Committee of Jodhpur, Pali, Jalore, Sirohi, and Barmer. BJP leaders of Jodhpur, Pali, Jalore, Sirohi, and Barmer will attend the Shakti Kendra Convenor Conference. Later Shah will attend a meeting in Ratanada of the Jodhpur Lok Sabha Booth workers and then leave for Delhi. He is also expected to hold a rally in Churu on April 1 in support of party candidate para-Olympian Devendra Jhajhariya who is contesting his debut LS poll. The Churu seat is set to see a tough contest as the Congress has fielded BJP rebel and sitting Churu MP Rahul Kaswan.

PM Modi to hold first LS poll rally on April 2

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address the first LS poll rally in Kotputli which comes under the Jaipur Rural Lok Sabha seat on April 2 at LBS College, Kotputli, for Jaipur Rural candidate Rao Rajendra Singh. This will be the first visit of PM Modi keeping in mind the Lok Sabha elections. Earlier, he had held several public meetings during the assembly elections and his last poll rally was on November 23, the last day of the election campaign in Devgarh, Rajsamand.

Congress top brass in Jaipur on April 6

The Congress which is facing a lot of issues in its ticket distribution in the state will get some relief in the form of the poll rally which will be addressed by its high command including National President Mallikarjun Kharge, the Gandhis including Sonia, Rahul and Priyanka.
The Congress leaders will be releasing the party manifesto for the Lok Sabha election in Jaipur on April 6 at a public meeting at Vidyadhar Nagar Stadium.

Many Congress leaders do not want to contest!

Meanwhile, Congress candidate from Jhunjhunu Lok Sabha seat Brijendra Ola has said that he did not want to contest the elections but had assured the party to give all possible support to whoever the party gave a ticket. Ola said this during the launch of a public relations campaign in the Khetri region while adding that he entered the election field after the request of Gehlot, Pilot, PCC chief Govind Singh Dotasara, State Incharge Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa and the party high command.

Ola is not the only Congress leader who has expressed his desire to not contest the LS polls on the party ticket. A candidate from Rajasmand Sudershan Rawat had also written a letter to party leadership saying that he did not wish to contest. His name was announced by the party after which he said that he had already told the party high command about this a month ago. Rawat was declared the candidate on March 25, but he returned the ticket two days later.

Similarly, the party had to replace its Jaipur City candidate after giving a ticket to Sunil Sharma as his name sparked a controversy due to his alleged association with a right-wing forum The Jaipur Dialogues. He was replaced by former minister in the Gehlot government Pratap Singh Khachariyawas who lost the 2023 Assembly polls from Jaipur’s Civil Lines seat. This move of the party led to resentment among the Brahmin community which did not get any representation in the list.

Meanwhile, amid the Brahmin representation concern, the party gave its former Speaker Dr CP Joshi ticket from the Bhilwara seat. It swapped Damodar Gurjar’s seat with Joshi and gave Gurjar a ticket in place of Rawat in Rajsamand.
Joshi has lost the 2023 Assembly polls from Nathdwara seat to BJP’s Vishvaraj Singh Mewar.
In its last name announced on 25 LS seats of Rajasthan, the BJP has fielded its State General Secretary Damodar Aggarwal from Bhilwara after cutting the ticket of sitting MP Subhash Bahedia. Damodar Aggarwal will face senior Congress leader CP Joshi.

(Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone. The opinions and facts in this article do not represent the stand of News9.)

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