Congress has fielded strong candidates in Rajasthan, it remains to be seen what the result is?

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In Rajasthan, Congress Party has announced the names of candidates for 10 seats for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. The Congress party, which had lost all 25 seats in the state in the last two Lok Sabha elections, is entering the elections with all its might this time. That is why out of the 10 candidates declared so far, none of the old candidates has been repeated. However, big Congress leaders like former Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, former Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot, former Union Minister Bhanwar Jitendra Singh have not contested the elections. If all these leaders had also contested the elections, there would have been a tough contest between Congress and BJP. However, Ashok Gehlot’s son Vaibhav Gehlot has been fielded in the Lok Sabha elections this time too. But their area has been changed to Jalore-Sirohi instead of Jodhpur. Churu MP Rahul Kaswan, who left BJP and joined Congress, has also been made a candidate from Churu. Along with this, the party has made Tarachand Meena, who resigned from IAS, its candidate for Udaipur seat.

Govindram Meghwal has been made the candidate from Bikaner reserved seat in the Congress list. Govindram Meghwal had lost the last assembly elections from Khajuwala area. He has been a cabinet minister in the previous Gehlot government and previously also an MLA from BJP. Last time Madan Gopal Meghwal was made the candidate from Bikaner. Whereas in 2014, former MP Shankar Pannu was made the candidate. Rahul Kaswan, who became MP from BJP twice, has been made the candidate for Churu parliamentary seat. Rahul Kaswan’s father Ramsingh Kaswan has been MP from Churu four times. He was the first to open the account of BJP in the district. But due to the cancellation of Rahul Kaswan’s ticket, he will contest the elections on behalf of Congress. Last time Rafiq Mandelia was made the candidate from Churu and in 2014, Pratap Poonia was made the candidate.

MLA Brijendra Ola has been made the candidate from Jhunjhunu seat. Four-time MLA Brijendra Vala was the Minister of State for Transport in the Gehlot government. His father Shishram Ola was a five-time MP from Jhunjhunu, nine-time MLA and cabinet minister in the central and state governments. Last time Surajgarh MLA Shravan Kumar was made the candidate from Jhunjhunu and in 2014, Brijendra Ola’s wife Rajbala Ola was made the candidate. Mundawar MLA Lalit Yadav has been made the candidate for Alwar seat, which has a majority of Yadav voters. Lalit Yadav had won the last assembly elections by 34526 votes. Bhanwar Jitendra Singh from Alwar had contested elections from Congress twice and was defeated by a huge margin. Sanjana Jatav has been made the candidate from Bharatpur reserved seat. Whereas last time Abhijeet Kumar Jatav and in 2014 Dr. Suresh Jatav were candidates. This time’s candidate Sanjana Jatav had lost the last assembly elections from Kathumar seat by only 409 votes. Sanjana Jatav is currently a member of Alwar District Council and since the age of only 26, she has been continuously getting tickets from the Congress Party. Sanjana Jatav is associated with the campaigns of Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi. Because of this he got the ticket.

Congress has fielded Deoli MLA Harish Meena from Tonk-Sawai Madhopur seat. Whereas last time his brother Namonarayan Meena and before that cricketer Mohammad Azharuddin had contested the elections. There was talk of Sachin Pilot contesting elections from here. But he has fielded his confidant Harish Meena. Harish Meena has won the election of MP from BJP in 2014 and MLA from Congress in 2018 and 2023. He has previously been DGP of Rajasthan Police.

Karan Singh Uchiarada has been made the candidate in Jodhpur. Last time, Vaibhav Gehlot, son of Ashok Gehlot, was the candidate there. But lost by 3 lakh votes. In 2014, Union Minister Chandresh Kumari was a candidate from there. Jodhpur Lok Sabha seat was once considered the stronghold of former Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot. He has won the election of MP from Jodhpur five times and MLA six times. But due to his son’s crushing defeat in the last Lok Sabha elections, he has made his son Vaibhav Gehlot a candidate from Jalore-Sirohi seat instead of Jodhpur. From Jodhpur, BJP has declared Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat as its candidate for the third consecutive time.

Vaibhav Gehlot, son of former Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, will contest from Jalore-Sirohi seat. Last time Ratan Dewasi was the candidate from here. Whereas in 2014, Udaylal Anjana, resident of Chittorgarh, was made the candidate. Tarachand Meena, who was the collector of Udaipur, has been made the candidate from Udaipur seat. Raghuveer Meena was the Congress candidate from here in 2019 and 2014. Udaylal Anjana has been made the candidate for Chittorgarh seat. Anjana was a cabinet minister in the Gehlot government and had lost the last assembly elections. Last time Gopal Singh Shekhawat and Girija Vyas had contested elections in Chittorgarh in 2014. Udaylal Anjana had lost the election from Jalore-Sirohi seat in 2014. State President CP Joshi is going to contest elections from BJP for the third time in Chittorgarh.

This time Congress has fielded three sitting MLAs, Brijendra Ola from Jhunjhunu, Lalit Yadav from Alwar and Harish Meena from Tonk-Sawai Madhopur. BJP has fielded MP Rahul Kaswan from Churu and former administrative officers Harish Meena and Tarachand Meena. Congress has fielded three MLAs. On the other five seats, names of MLAs Ashok Chandna from Kota, Murarilal Meena from Dausa, Sudarshan Singh Rawat from Rajsamand, Harish Chaudhary from Barmer and Anita Jatav from Karauli-Dholpur are running.

There is discussion in Congress that Banswara-Dungarpur seat can be given to Bharatiya Adivasi Party, Sikar seat to Marxist Communist Party and Nagaur and Barmer seats to Rashtriya Loktantrik Party in alliance. Due to this, the names of the candidates for these seats have not been decided yet. However, Barmer MLA Harish Chaudhary is opposing the alliance. He has been an MP from Barmer and wants that only the Congress Party candidate should contest the elections from Barmer seat. Due to this, the alliance has not been announced yet. This election remains a question of supremacy for Congress. After the defeat in the Assembly, Congress has a golden opportunity to convert the last two defeats into victory and move towards strengthening its lost support base.

-Ramesh Saraf Dhamora

(The author is an independent journalist accredited by the Government of Rajasthan.)

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