In the BJP list of seven candidates announced on Saturday, turncoat politicians had a better say. Three such turncoats (read Congress rebels) managed to bag ticket of the saffron party from the segments of their choice.
The name of BJP national spokesperson and senior leader Capt Abhimanyu, who was interested in contesting from either Rohtak or Sonepat, is missing from the list. The party instead fielded Ramesh Kaushik from Sonepat and Om Prakash Dhankar from Rohtak.
Sources said Capt Abhimanyu, who is considered close to Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi, had made all the grand preparations to start campaigning, received a setback after his name didn't figure in the list. He had shown his interest to contest from Rohtak at a press conference four months ago.
Rebel Congress Sohna MLA Dharambir Singh who was inducted in the party a few days ago was rewarded with the party ticket from Bhiwani-Mahendergarh, overlooking former MP Sudha Yadav, whose prospects for fighting from Gurgaon seat were marred with the induction of rebel Congress Ahir leader Rao Inderjit Singh into the party.
Party's Sonepat nominee, Ramesh Kaushik, too is a turncoat and had joined the saffron party around five months ago.
BJP faces rebellion in Sonepat, Rohtak
A day after Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) announced its nominees from Sonepat and Rohtak Lok Sabha seats, chinks were visible after one of the ticket-seekers from Sonepat quit the party, while supporters of another displayed black flags at the party office in Rohtak.
On Saturday, barely few minutes after saffron party announced the name of Ramesh Kaushik, former minister, who had joined the party only six months ago, as its Sonepat candidate, Pradeep Sangwan, a front-runner for the ticket and son of senior Jat leader Kishan Singh Sangwan, declared to quit the party.
On Sunday, while addressing supporters at his Sector-15 residence, he threatened to contest as an independent to spoil the chances of official BJP nominee, if the party failed to reverse its decision by March 19.
In Rohtak, supporters of ex-MLA Naresh Malik created ruckus in front of the party headquarters on Sunday and displayed black flags against the decision to field Om Prakash Dhankar, party's kisan morcha national president.
Protesters alleged that their leader Naresh Malik was overlooked at the behest of one senior party leader. They sought to review the decision.
Unruly scenes were witnessed when BJP state president Ram Bilas Sharma reached the party headquarters. Protesters damaged office furniture in his presence and attempted to waylaid him. Police were called in and Sharma was rescued by the cops.
Former party MLA Naresh Malik, who is miffed over allotment of ticket to Om Prakash Dhankar from Rohtak, said that the way the tickets had been given in Haryana was 'questionable' and he would meet party leadership in this regard with a request to change some of the nominees.