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He is guest who will go back after polling: Sadhna SinghI will seek account of each particle of sand taken illegally by mafia: Arun Yadav

Leading her spouse chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s election campaign on their home turf Budhni assembly constituency Sadhna Singh has an unwelcome ‘guest’ to deal with

bhopal Updated: Nov 26, 2018 19:56 IST
Ranjan
Ranjan
Hindustan Times, Bhopal
Budhni,Shivraj Singh Chouhan,assembly election
Chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s wife Sadhna Singh canvasses for her husband chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan in Budhni assembly constituency (HT photo by Mujeeb Faruqui)(HT Photo)

Leading her spouse chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s election campaign on their home turf Budhni assembly constituency, about 70 kilometers from Bhopal, Sadhna Singh has an unwelcome ‘guest’ to deal with who, as she says, will stay till the day of polling on November 28.

If Sadhna Singh exudes confidence that her spouse will win the election with a huge margin Chouhan (59)’s rival and Congress candidate Arun Yadav (44) who is from Khargone district, about 300 kilometers away from Budhni, said in his speeches, he will settle in Budhni after defeating Chouhan in the elections to take on the sand mafia who have destroyed Narmada river.

Accompanied by a horde of BJP workers including a good number of woman workers and also her younger son Kunal Chouhan Sadhna Singh went from from door to door in her constituency with an appeal to voters- Kamal par button dabana hai (Push the button on the BJP symbol Lotus).

Draped in a green colour saree with pallu (a loose end of the saree) on her head, a dupatta with ‘Bhajpa’ (BJP) and its symbol Lotus printed over it around her neck and tilak smeared by women on her forehead she met Sadhna Singh canvassed for her spouse and BJP in several wards of Budhni town.

In between her interactions with voters who, she said, were a part of her family, whom she came to meet even when they asked her not to come, she raised slogans ‘Bhajpa zindabad’ while raising her hand. People accompanying her responded to the same raising the slogan. When she met some girls she asked them ‘Will you vote for your mama (maternal uncle)?’ ‘Will you make him CM again?’ to get a positive reply from them.

On Congress’ charges on Vyapam, want of development and unemployment in the state she said, “I am used to facing such charges. Let them do their job, I am focussed on my own.”

On challenges she said, “The only challenge to us is how to increase the victory margin up to more than one lakh this time (Chouhan had won 2013 assembly elections from the seat by a margin on 84805 votes).”

Congress candidate Arun Yadav campaigns in Budhni assembly constituency (HT Photo)

About 50 kilometers away from Budhni town in the constituency Congress candidate the two-time MP and former union minister of state Arun Yadav had his own message to convey to gatherings at Kothra and Hathighat and some other villages out of 25-30 villages he visited on the day.

Arun Yadav was state Congress president before he was replaced by Kamal Nath in April this year.

While he is being dubbed as an outsider in the constituency by his rivals Arun Yadav said in public meetings, “I have been sent by Rahul Gandhi ji to serve you. Prices of all essential items like petrol, diesel and LPG have shot up. Mining mafia has destroyed Narmada river. Farmers are living a miserable life, thanks to the policies of the BJP government and when they raise their voice for their demand they get police bullets as happened in Mandsaur. Irrespective of the election results I will remain with you to serve you.”

When asked about his candidature announced at the eleventh hour Arun Yadav said, “This was indeed a pleasant surprise to me but I must thank the party president Rahul Gandhi ji for having faith in me. I am getting a tremendous response from people.”

He said, “I consider myself a real Narmada-Putra. Like the CM I am also from an area which is close to Narmada river. But whereas there is illegal mining under Chouhan’s administration I will seek account of each and every particle of sand taken away illegally by mining mafia from the river.”

Ex-Congress candidate from the seat Rajkumar Patel who is accompanying Arun Yadav said, “We are fighting the cheapest election in the state with no money power against those who believe in costliest elections. I have located a place where Arun ji will stay after winning the elections.”

Mahendra Vyas, a resident of Hathighat village said, “We are witnessing a very close contest. Being a chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan may have an edge but even if he wins despite anti-incumbency wave his victory margin will be greatly reduced this time.”

First Published: Nov 26, 2018 19:56 IST