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Independent’s day

india Updated: Oct 22, 2009 23:44 IST
HT Correspondent

Poll results from Gurgaon assembly seat marked a major shift this time, as debutant independent candidate Sukhbir Kataria (44) defeated Congress’ four-time MLA Dharambir Gauba (77).

Kataria won 41,013 votes against Gauba’s 38,873. BJP’s Umesh Agarwal (39) could garner 23,864 votes while another independent candidate, RS Rathee (44), who was supported by residents’ welfare associations (RWA), stood fourth with 5,951 votes.

The richest among all the candidates in Gurgaon constituency, Kataria was Indian National Lok Dal’s (INLD) state youth vice-president.

Just before the elections, he deserted INLD on being denied a party ticket and filed his nomination as an independent candidate.

In his nomination papers, Kataria disclosed wealth amounting to Rs 35 crore. His wife Ritu Devi also owns property worth Rs 3.56 crore.

“Gurgaon voters favoured me as they were unhappy with the apathy of the Congress government towards basic issues. Development had taken a back seat in Gurgaon,” said Kataria.

Another Congress stalwart and three-time MLA from Badshahpur constituency, Rao Dharampal (66), emerged victorious yet again, defeating an independent candidate by 11,385 votes. Badshahpur is a newly constituted constituency comprising DLF phases II and III, Palam Vihar, Southcity (II and III) and Sushant Lok (II and III), besides other areas.

Gurgaon district has four assembly constituencies: Gurgaon, Badshahpur, Pataudi and Sohna. The first two are largely urban areas while the rest are rural constituencies.

INLD candidate Ganga Ram defeated Congress candidate and sitting MLA Bhupinder Chaudhary in Pataudi by over 24,000 votes while Congress candidate Dharambir defeated BSP candidate Zakir Hussein by a margin of 505 votes in Sohna.