Padharo mhare des, the Rajasthani folk song reflects on the large-heartedness and warmth of the state in welcoming its guests. But will Tonk Sawai Madhopur constituency sing the same jingle for the two outsiders or parachutes candidates of Congress and BJP?
They might, because in Rajasthan caste is the most deciding factor when it comes to choosing a candidate.
Indian team skipper and native of Hyderabad in Andhra Pradesh, Azharuddin is the Congress pick for the seat while the BJP has placed its bets on popular businessman from NCR Sukhbir Singh Jaunapuria, who has his roots in Haryana. Though the Meena community is predominant here, Gujjar, Muslim, Brahmin, Vaishya, Rajput and Jat are also capable of swinging the poll results.
Suresh Gautam, a resident of Sawai Madhopur, says: “Meenas’ votes count a lot in this constituency. If they unite and vote for Azharuddin, he will win. But if their votes split, as there are two more Meenas in the fray — NPP patron Kirori Lal Meena’s brother Jagmohan Meena and Independent candidate Makkhan Meena — then Jaunapuria will win.”
“Azhar will also get votes of Muslims and Gujjars, as Congress chief Sachin Pilot is a Gujjar,” he said. But here too, Jaunapuria, who is from Gujjar community, may eat into Azhar’s Gujjar votebank, say political experts.
Jats too, may most probably side with the ruling party, as many of them have succeeded in getting BJP tickets this time.
Jaunapuria is also expected to get a good chunk of Brahmin, Rajput and Vaishya votes, which comprise around 4 lakh, say political analysts.
In the recently concluded assembly elections, the BJP won all the eight assembly seats of this constituency, which experts say was due to Narendra Modi wave. And if the voting pattern is repeated, it would be a smooth sailing for BJP candidate Jaunapuria.