Of three Olympians, only Sandeep makes the cut
Hockey player wins Pehowa but wrestlers Yogeshwar Dutt and Babita Phogat bite the dust in Baroda, Dadri
Former Indian hockey captain Sandeep Singh, 33, became the first Olympian from Haryana to enter the state assembly by winning the Pehowa seat on the BJP ticket. Olympian wrestlers Yogeshwar Dutt and Babita Phogat, however, bit the dust in the political dangal.
Sandeep defeated former cabinet minister and four-time MLA Harmohinder Singh’s son Mandeep Chatha, 46 of the Congress by 5,314 votes. The hockey player got 42,613 votes, while Mandeep polled 37,299 votes.
The BJP won the Pehowa seat for the first time. Except for the first assembly election in 1967, the constituency has remained either with the Congress or the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD). In the past three elections, the BJP emerged second twice.
Olympic bronze medallist Yogeshwar Dutt, 36, who enjoys a larger than life image in Sonepat gave a tough fight to Congress stalwart Sri Krishan Hooda, 74. Dutt lost by 4,840 votes. Hooda won the Baroda seat for the third time in a row.
Babita, 29, finished third in Dadri. She polled 24,786 votes, while BJP rebel Sombir Sangwan got 43,849 votes to emerge victorious. Satpal Sangwan of Jannayak Janata Party got 29,577 votes to finish second.
All three Arjuna awardees, who were working with Haryana Police, had resigned to make their poll debut on the BJP ticket.