With other major political parties yet to officially announce candidates from Kalanaur (reserve) constituency in Rohtak, which is the home turf of chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Saturday announced Ram Avtar Balmiki as its nominee.
Sitting Congress MLA Shakuntala Khatak’s candidature has been challenged by Rohtak municipal corporation mayor Renu Dabla, who has developed close links with chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda’s family after becoming mayor.
Dabla, whose father-in-law Azad Dabala is an old-time Congressman, has already started campaign in Kalanaur assembly segment.
Khatak, then a non-entity, won Kalanaur seat by a margin of 27,860 votes after she was given ticket by chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda. Apart from women candidates, other ticket aspirants are Satish Bandhu and Jaihind Kalinga, old-time worker of the Congress.
The Indian National Lok Dal has not announced nominee from Kalanaur so far. From the INLD, Nagaram Balmiki, who remained runners-up by get-ting 2.42 lakh votes in the 2009 assembly poll, Fakir Chand and Sarita Narayan are the frontrunners.
Om Prakash Bagri and Satbir Ranga are locking horns for the Haryana Janhit Congress ticket from here.
The Bahujan Samaj Party is the only party, which has declared its candidate – Ashok Kumar from this constituency.