United for General sahib, polls divide villagers

  • Saurabh Duggal, Hindustan Times, Bapora (Bhiwani)
  • Updated: Oct 06, 2014 09:55 IST

With a population of 12,000, this village to the west of Bhiwani is famous for its inhabitants who follow the old tradition of serving the defence services, mainly army, and after VK Singh became the chief of army staff in 2010, Bapora shot to national fame and is now known as the General’s village.

The villagers, majority of whom are Rajputs along with Brahmin and Dalit minorities take pride on being from the village of General VK Singh (retd), who is a union minister ‎in the BJP government. But when it comes to the electoral politics, the village is divided.

“The entire village takes pride in General sahib and it’s only because of him that the entire country knows about Bapora and its location. Now he is a union minister and that has added another feather to the cap of the village. But in the elections, the villagers owe their allegiance to different parties and they will go accordingly,” said Rajinder Singh Tanwar.

“Had General sahib been a candidate in these assembly elections, things would have been different and at least 80-90% of the villagers would have voted for him,” added an ex-servicemen, Randhir Singh, who got retired as Hawaldar from 192 RT, and following the village tradition his son joined the army.

There are around 600 serving army personnel and ex-servicemen in the village and most of them are from the Rajput community.

Are the villagers expecting General VK Singh (retd) to be here for the election campaign in the coming days? “He might or might not come. But if he comes here and whichever candidate he campaigns for, the people for sure will honour his word. At least half of the village will vote for his choice,” said Captain Gaje Singh (retd).

“When General sahib never shied away from associating himself with Bopara village and even remembered us when he became the army chief, there is no reason that people here will not accept his choice,” said Shri Krishan Kumar from Dhanak community, whose younger brother is in army.

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