Haryana assembly polls: Congress may save face, but not the grace
Even though chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and a few other senior Congress leaders are surging ahead in their respective constituencies, there are many who are trailing behind even on the third or lower spots, as the counting of the assembly polls is in progress.
If initial trends of the 87 seats of the total 90 seats are any indication, the Hooda-led Congress government which ruled the state for two terms straight, may save face, but certainly, not the grace.
However, while education minister Geeta Bhukkal was first to be declared winner from Jhajjar defeating BJP’s Sadhu Ram by over 27,000 votes, Congress four-time MLA Nirmal Singh ate the dirt as BJP legislature group leader in Vidhan Sabha Anil Vij became the first BJP candidate to have won the Ambala cantt seat.
While Hooda was leading by about 26,000 over his nearest rival INLD’s Satish Nandal in his Garha Sampla Kiloi constituency and was set to win, the PWD minister Randeep Surjewala was ahead of his rival by over 10,000 in Kaithal.
Likewise, the public health minister Kiran Chaudhry was leading from Tosham by over 7,000 votes over BJP’s Rajbir Lala, it was Congress’ Dr K V Singh who was surging ahead by 3,500 votes over INLD’s Naina Singh, wife of senior INLD leader Ajay Chautala, who is in jail along with his father and former CM Om Prakash Chautala in the JBT teachers recruitment case. She is also mother of country’s youngest MP Dushyant who is also contesting from Uchana Kalan.
However, it was the technical education minister Mahender Pratap Chaudhary who was losing to BJP’s Seema Trikha by over 20,000 votes in Badkhal seat, while the health minister Rao Narender Singh fell to the third position in his Narnaul seat where BJP’s Om Prakash was ahead of INLD’s Kamlesh.
The Congress finance minister HS Chattha was not contesting this time and had fielded his son Mandeep who was trailing behind INLD’s Jaitirath Dahiya in Pehowa. Likewise, another senior Congress MLA Karan Singh Dalal was trailing in his Palwal seat behind BJP’s Deepak Mangla.
Congress cooperation minister Satpal Sangwan, too, had fallen to the third position, while INLD’s Rajdeep Singh was ahead of BJP candidate by a huge margin. Agriculture minister Paramvir Singh, too, trailed at the third position in Tohana where BJP’s Subhash Barala was on the top.