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Berasia

A strong anti-incumbency wave against a long-reigning representative was the major factor that took this sure seat out of Bharatiya Janata Party?s grip.

india Updated: Oct 22, 2003 19:02 IST

A strong anti-incumbency wave against a long-reigning representative was the major factor that took this sure seat out of Bharatiya Janata Party’s grip. Hadn’t it been for the strong anti-wave against Laxminarayan Sharma, who won from the seat as many as five times, the seat could never have been wrested by Congress during the last election.

This is evident from the fact that the voters, who clearly show signs of natural fatigue with a long-running representative, still seem to be inclined towards the BJP, but for its choice of candidate. What would make the contest here more challenging for the BJP is the fact that the current MLA has managed to make quite an impression with the voters and may take away the edge that the BJP might have owing to party image.

Till 1998 elections, Berasia was the stronghold of the right wing parties- earlier Jansangh and now the BJP. As the BJP candidate, Sharma was elected for five times from here before tasting defeat from Congress candidate Jodharam Gurjar from this seat. Sharma also got elected one time from Govindpura and Bhopal South constituencies each.

The Gurjar and Thakur votes decide the fate of any candidate from here. Most of the area under this seat is rural spread from Bhopal to Nazirabad. One ward and part of another ward of the Bhopal City is included in this constituency.

A BJP worker Bhikam Singh of Golkhedi says that Sharma only worked for himself and not for the public. He strongly advocated the change of BJP candidate. Another worker Mohan Singh Gaud of Lambakheda had similar views saying that Sharma hardly meets the people.

Most of the people denied that there is any caste factor working in this area. BJP’s Rajmal Gupta asked that if there is any caste-equation, how has a candidate who belongs to Kayastha and Brahmin community won this seat, when Kayasths are almost non-existent in this area while the Brahmins are in minority.

Gurjar community is in majority here. Most of the villages around Nazirabad under this constituency have Gurjar majority. These villages include Gujar Todi, Khajuriya, Habibganj, Khitmas, Bagapura, Ramgarha, Jhirniya, Udrai, and Badbeli etc. It is said that most of the Gurjar votes have forged a kind of electoral alliance following their convention at Deo Barkhedi.

First Published: Oct 22, 2003 19:02 IST