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HindustanTimes Sun,21 Sep 2014

Unguarded before BJP tide

Rajesh Moudgil, Hindustan Times  Chandigarh, August 30, 2014
First Published: 12:56 IST(30/8/2014) | Last Updated: 12:59 IST(30/8/2014)

Shiv Charan Lal Sharma is a Congress rebel who got elected to Haryana assembly as an independent candidate and became labour and employment minister in the Bhupinder Singh Hooda government.

Even if the octogenarian MLA, who managed to defeat the Congress nominee in 2009, gets the Congress ticket from Faridabad (NIT) seat this time, it would still be an uphill task for him to win in the ensuing assembly election.

His rootedness to his constituency and decades-old performance notwithstanding, the first-time independent MLA Sharma faces a towering BJP tide in the ensuing assembly polls, despite the people’s slowly surfacing anguish against absence of ‘achche din’ of the BJP government.

 It was only recent election of the Faridabad Lok Sabha seat, of which Faridabad (NIT) is one of the nine assembly segments, in which BJP’s Krishan Pal Gurjar won with a margin of 4.8 lakh votes, defeating Congress’ Avtar Bhadana. Gurjar grabbed more than 84,000 from Faridabad (NIT), while Bhadana was polled only 18,000 votes. Humiliated by defeat, Bhadana has since then kicked the Congress, accusing many party leaders of sabotage.

 Another bad news for Sharma is that Gurjar and Rao Inderjit, who represent Faridabad and Gurgaon, respectively, have both become ministers in the Modi government. His constituency also neibhours national capital Delhi which was swept by BJP by winning all the seven LS seats.

The strong sentiment in favour of BJP in the entire region in the LS election seems to be more or less intact even now and even his youngest son Neeraj Sharma too has recently joined BJP.

Sharma, on the other hand has a long standing as a political leader in Faridabad (NIT) and he has risen from the rank. He is counting on development plank of Hooda and his (Sharma’s) works carried out during the past about five years. But since there are also charges of regional bias in development and jobs against Congress government, which may weigh against Sharma.

Assembly constituency: Faridabad (NIT)
Education: Under matric
Assets (2009)
Rs 53 lakh (movable)
Rs 3.77 crore (immovable)(based on affidavit submitted in the 2009 assembly polls)

Career graph: He was senior deputy mayor, MC, Faridabad for 10 years since 1999, also held post of chairman, planning and resources committee, MC, Faridabad, from 1994 to 1999. He was also organisation secretary, Haryana Pradesh Congress Committee in late 1990s.

Portfolios held in 5 years: Labour and employment

Controversies: Sharma landed in a controversy after calling suicide victim Geetika Sharma a ‘servant’ of his former ministerial colleague Gopal Kanda who was the prime accused in the alleged abetment to suicide case. Sharma also said the case in which Kanda had been booked was not ‘such a big’ one. Sharma, however, apologised after coming under fire from BJP and women’s bodies and said he had not said anything against the girl, who was like his ‘daughter’ and that he was misunderstood and the his remark distorted.

Performance in the house: Was hardly noticeable in the assembly.

Achievements: He got village Kheri Gujran the status of sub-tehsil, a long-standing demand of people of the village; got a PG college, got the main nullah (drain) cemented, thus checking the grossly wide-spread unhygienic conditions and Leisure Valley Park, set up, 35-km Sohna-Ballabhgarh road and five primary schools constructed, while a 50-bed hospital is nearing completion.

Failures: He candidly admits he failed to bring canal water to the area.

Tomorrow: Aftab Ahmed, transport minister.

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