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No clear-cut choice for major parties

With the Congress’ sitting MP Jitender Singh Malik not keen to contest again from the Sonepat Lok Sabha seat, the field is wide open in this constituency for the upcoming parliamentary polls.

punjab Updated: Mar 04, 2014 23:33 IST
Sat Singh

With the Congress’ sitting MP Jitender Singh Malik not keen to contest again from the Sonepat Lok Sabha seat, the field is wide open in this constituency for the upcoming parliamentary polls.


Malik has expressed his desire to contest from his bastion, Gannaur considered a safe seat for him in the assembly polls scheduled later this year. He has twice been an MLA from Gannaur, which falls under Sonepat parliamentary constituency.

Though Malik has refused to rule out the possibility of his contesting the Lok Sabha polls, thanks to chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda’s persuasion, the CM’s political adviser, Prof Virender Singh, has been lobbying hard to grab the chance if the former backs out. Youth Congress national secretary Devinder Kadyan, who hails from Gannaur assembly segment, is also staking his claim to the ticket.

From the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), three-time MP late Kishan Singh Sangwan’s son Pradeep Sangwan is among the frontrunners owing to his father’s legacy and being the Jat face of a Jat-dominated constituency. Since 1991, barring one instance, the seat has been won by a Jat leader. Party’s state unit president Ram Bilas Sharma has been lobbying for Ramesh Kaushik, a former Congress minister who joined the saffron party last year. Kaushik has held public rallies twice in Sonepat district, which were attended by party’s national leaders Rajnath Singh, Sushma Swaraj and Venkaiah Naidu.

Former Kharkhodda MLA Padam Singh Dahiya and former Haryana Public Service Commission (HPSC) chairman KC Banger, both Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) veterans, are eyeing the party ticket. The senior Sangwan had won this seat for the party in 1998, before he switched over to the BJP.

Meanwhile, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has picked Jai Singh Thekadar as its candidate. Hailing from Kasandi village of Sonepat district, he is the president of the Gohana Bar association.

He is known for his generous donations to gaushalas. He remained the secretary of Arya Pratinidhi Sabha and the sarpanch of Kasandi village.