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The power kanyas

The son might rise in Indian politics; but in Maharashtra, it is the daughter who is busy making headlines.

india Updated: Nov 04, 2006 00:36 IST

Poonam Mahajan: Pramod Mahajan’s son, Rahul was all set to make his debut into the BJP until an alleged cocaine and champagne party at his murdered father’s official house in Delhi went wrong. Rahul has since got married and has tried to get back into the political limelight by participating in a demonstration demanding Afzal Guru’s death, but it is his sister Poonam, 26, who stepped in with the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance threatened to fall apart last month in Mumbai. It is Poonam, also, who has been inducted into the BJP.

Supriya Sule: As Sharad Pawar’s only child, her entry into politics was inevitable, more so when, after her return to India from Singapore where her husband was working, she involved herself in grassroots projects, including education for tribal girls in Maharashtra. Supriya, 38, was the NCP’s candidate for the Rajya Sabha seat vacated by the death of Vasant Chavan. There have been the inevitable comments on whether her cousin, Ajit Pawar who has been politically active for 18 years will now be sidetracked, but Supriya says diplomatically that he is her ‘senior’ and she has nothing but ‘respect’ for him.

Priya Dutt: Following the death of her hugely popular father, Sunil Dutt, there was some speculation that Priya’s filmstar brother Sanjay was claiming his father’s political legacy. Sanjay, however, is embroiled in the Mumbai bomb blasts case; his verdict is due later this month. Sunil Dutt’s Mumbai North West Lok Sabha ticket was given to Priya, 37, who was closely associated with her father’s campaigns. She won on a huge sympathy wave.

Pranati Shinde: Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde’s 25-year-old daughter manages poll campaigns for him in Solapur. Political speculation has it that she is poised to make her own political debut, groundwork for which has begun with her fund-raising campaigns for cancer.

Varsha Gaikwad: A PhD in Maths who quit her job at Mumbai University to follow in the footsteps of her father, Congress MP Eknath Gaikwad, the 29-year-old Varsha is as yet unmarried. She was favoured over her brother Tushar to get the MLA ticket for Dharavi, Asia’s largest slum, where she is rooting for open spaces and free public schools for the poor.