Pro-active Gen Next making their presence felt this election | punjab | Hindustan Times
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Pro-active Gen Next making their presence felt this election

punjab Updated: Mar 26, 2014 23:56 IST
Vishal Joshi

The generation next from the Devi Lal clan, Dushyant Chautala, who is taking a plunge into the electoral politics for the first time in this Lok Sabaha election, prefers personal contact programmes over the social media platform.

Dushyant, 26, a fourth generation politician from the Chautala family, is contesting from Hisar.

The Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) candidate is not only the youngest contestant from the state, but also the only member of the family out in the fray.

Dushyant is being helped by younger brother Digvijay Chautala and mother Nayana Singh. The family is holding nearly 40 public meetings at various places daily.

"We are definitely banking on the younger generation to help us to bringing in a political change. Though our team has limited presence on Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, I believe in personal interaction to garner maximum support," said Dushyant, an alumnus of Lawrence School, Sanawar, and a graduate in business administration from California State University, the US.

Though two INLD stalwarts - Dushyant's grandfather former chief minister Om Prakash Chautala and father Abhay Chautala - are serving jail terms in New Delhi, the Chautalas got backing from the Badals of Punjab.

Last week, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president and Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal had accompanied Dushyant for the filing of his nomination papers in Hisar.

"The Chautalas are our extended family and I reaffirm my full support to Dushyant," Sukhbir told reporters, adding he would work to defeat the BJP-HJC (Haryana Janhit Congress) candidate and sitting MP Kuldeep Bishnoi.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is an alliance partner of the SAD in Punjab.

Similarly, family members of other politicians are also actively canvassing for their candidates. Mostly, they are engaged in personal contact programmes under which they are visiting remote villages and addressing the public.

In Hisar, Bhavya Bishnoi accompanying his father Kuldeep Bishnoi to important political functions, public meetings in Hisar town and to the filing of papers.

HJC chief's wife Renuka, who is representing the Adampur assembly segment, is also actively involved in campaigning.

Similarly, Yudhvir Singh Khayalia's advocate son Sanjeet Singh is also canvassing for his father.

Congress candidate from Gurgaon Sampat Singh and BJP's candidate Rao Inderjit Singh are regular on Facebook.

Both leaders are actively using Facebook to reach out to the people, informing them in advance about their meeting schedules. If sources are to be believed their children are taking personal interest in such activities.

"Bharti Rao often accompanies her father Rao Inderjit Singh to important campaigns and rallies. There is a common feeling that the veteran Ahir leader wants to promote his daughter as the generation next leader," said sources with the party.

Similarly, Sampat's son Gaurav Singh, promoter of a private school in Yamunanagar district, is very active in Hisar for his father's campaigning.

Congress candidate from Kurukshetra Naveen Jindal is assisted by his mother Savitri Jindal, wife Shallu Jindal and elder brothers Prithivi Raj and Ratan Jindal in campaigning.

Politicians are also accused of promoting their ward/kin in the public sphere. Earlier, during an interview with Hindustan Times, Bishnoi had supported kin of elected representatives entering politics.

"There is nothing wrong if the ward of a politician enters electoral politics where voters can elect or reject a candidate, but politicians using Rajya Sabha as the backdoor for their children's entry into politics should be condemned," Bishnoi had remarked.