Madhya Pradesh bypolls: Samajwadi Party candidates join rival parties mid-campaign
The SP candidates, Bansilal Jatav (60) and Bhanu Pratap Singh Gurjar (39), have switched to the BJP and the Congress, respectivelyUpdated: Oct 29, 2020, 12:36 IST
Two Samajwadi Party (SP) candidates, who are contesting the upcoming Madhya Pradesh (MP) legislative assembly bypolls, did a volte-face on Wednesday and joined their rival parties such as the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Congress.
The U-turn came barely five days ahead of November 3, when bypolls will be held for 28 assembly seats in MP.
The SP candidates, Bansilal Jatav (60) and Bhanu Pratap Singh Gurjar (39), have switched to the BJP and the Congress, respectively.
The SP had fielded Jatav from Ambah, which is reserved for the Scheduled Castes (SC), in MP’s Morena district and Gurjar from Mehgaon constituency in Bhind district.
Morena and Bhind districts are a part of the Chambal region in MP.
Jatav joined the BJP during an election rally in the constituency in presence of Union minister Narendra Singh Tomar on Wednesday.
Gurjar followed suit and joined the Congress in Mehgaon.
Jatav, a three-time member of the MP legislative assembly (MLA), had quit the BJP after the party did not nominate him for the upcoming bypolls and joined the SP.
The SP’s MP unit is peeved at the “indiscipline and betrayal” of their candidates in the run-up to the crucial bypolls.
“Jatav joined the BJP on Wednesday. A BJP leader went to his house on Tuesday night and persuaded him to return to the party. Gurjar also joined the Congress. Our party is yet to take a decision about their act of indiscipline and betrayal,” said Yash Bharatiya, spokesperson for the SP’s MP unit.
“An audio clip has gone viral on social media, where a Congress leader can be heard trying to lure our Gwalior candidate, Roshan Baig. He is urging Baig to voluntarily withdraw from the contest. Both BJP and Congress leaders are pulling out all stops to intimidate and lure our candidates to withdraw from the upcoming bypolls. However, the voters will give a befitting reply to both the parties on the polling day,” he added.
The SP is contesting in 14 of the 28 seats, where bypolls will be held in MP on November 3. The party is largely contesting in the Gwalior-Chambal region.
At present, SP has a lone lawmaker in the 230-member MP assembly.
Jatav and Gurjar were unavailable for their comments, despite repeated attempts by HT.