Chautala hits the road with a vengeance
The Haryana CM has an insatiable appetite for electioneering. At least that's what his demeanor suggests.
Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala has an insatiable appetite for electioneering. At least that's what his demeanor and the grueling schedule he maintains suggests.
"Why have you just given me 38 villages to cover when I have been holding meetings in more than 60 villages on an average daily? Double the number of villages in Narwana," he tells his campaign manager Rajpal Singh on Wednesday while getting into his 'Vijay Rath' — a Bajaj Excel converted by Dilip Chhabria into a Landcruiser lookalike especially for campaigning.
Chautala has been on the road right from the time Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee first hinted at the possibility of early polls. He has already made two rounds of each of the 90 assembly segments in the state.
After his convoy reaches Sadopur, near Dhulkot, Chautala loses no time and targets the BJP and the Congress right away.
"Both the parties will be thrown out this time. And a government of our choice will be installed at the Centre," he says before making an appeal for their support.
The next destination is village Balana. The crowd is nothing much to brag about and the CM is in a great hurry. "Going by our past performance here, we should do well this time also," he says before moving on. The same routine is followed in Matheri Sekhan, Jansui (Ambala), Ajrawar and Saini Majra (Kurukshetra) villages.
In Pehowa, he attacks DPM L.K. Advani. "The BJP and the Congress are trying to help each other. Chor chor mausere bhai. (They are two of a kind) We have to defeat them," he declares before requesting party workers to work harder.
"If I can work for 18 hours everyday, why can't you do the same," he asks. Not that he has any option. The party, which has been in power in the state for close to five years, is facing a strong anti-incumbency wave.
It needs all the experience and skills of its finest campaigner to pull through. He is trying his best. But it just may not be enough.