Ticket allotment in the first phase has triggered resentment in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) camp in Karnal and Kurukshetra districts. He party has fielded national executive member Manohar Lal Khattar from Karnal, and senior RSS activist Pawan Saini from Ladwa in Kurukshetra district.
Rebel leaders from the saffron party have called them “outsiders” and “novices”, and seen their candidature as a ploy to harm the party’s electoral prospects.The rebel leaders are affluent and have never won any election. However, some party leaders, who were also aspiring candidates, had dismissed the rebellion as a political drama that would be over soon.
BJP state secretary Chander Prakash Kathuria, who is from Karnal; and Jatinder Singh Khurdban from Ladwa, both spurned for ticket, told Hindustan Times on Thursday that they would take the next step on the advice of their supporters.“There is a strong resentment among the BJP workers and the people of Karnal on the issue of fielding a candidate who did not belong to the constituency,” said Kathuria.
He said it seemed to be a move by certain people to not let the BJP gain power in the state. He has convened a workers’ meeting on Sunday. Builder Kathuria had contested on the BJP ticket in the 2009 elections and finished third. He had secured 14,883 votes, whereas runner-up Jai Prakash Gupta of the Haryana Janhit Congress had polled 32,163. Sumita Singh of the Congress had won for the second consecutive time in 2009 with 35,894 votes.
Khurdban, popular as Kaka, has interests in paper mills, hospitality, real estate etc. He joined the BJP before the recent Lok Sabha elections. “I was cheated by the BJP leadership. It brought me in for the parliamentary elections. I am now ignored for the assembly polls also,” said Kaka.
Similar scenes in Rohtak
Rohtak: Alleging that the party was favouring newcomers and turncoats over old leaders, several workers of the BJP protested on Wednesday outside the house of state party president Ram Bilas Sharma in Mahendergarh, and on Thursday burnt his effigy at Narnaul.
BJP national president Amit Shah had on Tuesday night released the first list of 43 candidates for the Haryana assembly polls. In reaction to the resentment to official choices, more than 300 party leaders holding various posts in Narnaul unit have tendered resignation over the party’s fielding a new face.
Sources said the supporters of senior leader Kailash Chander Sharma were bitter. The BJP picked Om Prakash Yadav, a newcomer to the party and a staunch supporter of Ahir leader and union minister Rao Inderjit Singh, as Narnaul nominee. Yadav joined the saffron party with Rao Inderjit when he quit the Congress in 2013.