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Monday, Nov 18, 2019

Rajasthan assembly election results 2018: Once the youngest MP, Sachin Pilot to be state’s youngest deputy CM

Rajasthan assembly results 2018: In 2004, Sachin Pilot was elected MP from Dausa, represented by his father Rajesh Pilot. After Rajesh Pilot’s death in 2000, his wife Rama Pilot won from Dausa in the by-election. In 2004, Sachin Pilot was nominated to contest from Dausa.

rajasthan-elections Updated: Dec 14, 2018 21:19 IST

Hindustan Times, Jaipur
Sachin Pilot will be the first leader to take oath as deputy CM will take oath along with the CM.
Sachin Pilot will be the first leader to take oath as deputy CM will take oath along with the CM.(Burhaan Kinu/HT File Photo)

Rajasthan Congress president Sachin Pilot became a Member of Parliament at 26; and at 41, will become the state’s youngest deputy chief minister.

In 2004, Pilot was elected MP from Dausa, represented by his father, Rajesh Pilot, in several Lok Sabha elections. After Rajesh Pilot’s death in a road accident near Jaipur in 2000, his wife, Rama Pilot, won from Dausa in the bypoll. In 2004 general elections, Sachin Pilot was nominated to contest from Dausa.

Rajasthan had a deputy chief minister twice in the past. Harishankar Babhda became Rajasthan’s first deputy chief minister in October 1994 when he was 66. Towards the end of Ashok Gehlot’s first tenure as chief minister in 2003, two leaders took oath as deputy chief ministers: Kamla Beniwal, 76, and Banwari Lal Bairwa, 70. Bairwa, like Pilot, was an MLA from Tonk.

But on both occasions, the deputy CMs were introduced in the middle or towards the end of the government’s tenure. BJP appointed Bhabhda as the deputy CM as a balance to Bhairon Singh Shekhawat in October 1994.

The Congress appointed Kamla Beniwal and Banwari Lal Bairwa as deputy CMs in January 2003 following the party’s debacle in the assembly bypolls. The appointments were seen as caste course correction before the 2003 assembly elections.

Sachin Pilot will be the first leader to take oath as deputy CM along with the chief minister.

For full coverage on Rajasthan assembly elections, click here

Sachin Pilot has taken the surname of his father, who was a pilot in the Indian Air Force, and began his political career in 2002 with the Congress. Two years later, the 26-year-old contested from Dausa, the constituency Rajesh Pilot represented in 1984, 1991, 1996, 1998 and 1999 Lok Sabha elections, and became the youngest MP.

In 2009, when Dausa was reserved for Scheduled Tribe (ST), Pilot shifted to Ajmer and defeated BJP’s Kiran Maheshwari by 76,000 votes. He was made the minister of corporate affairs in Manmohan Singh-led second Union Progressive Alliance (UPA) government, and was one of the youngest ministers in the cabinet.

For his love for the armed forces, Pilot joined Territorial Army as lieutenant. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from St Stephen’s College, Delhi University, and a Master of Business Administration from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia (US).

His mother, Rama Pilot, was an MLA from Hindoli in 1998. In 2003, she contested against Vasundhara Raje in Jhalrapatan (Jhalawar) and lost by more than 27,000 votes.

After the Congress was reduced to its worst tally of 21 in the 2013 assembly elections, Pilot was made party’s state unit president. Though he lost his third Lok Sabha election in 2014 to BJP’s Sanwar Lal Jat by 171,983 votes, he steered the party to massive victories in the following assembly and Lok Sabha bypolls, winning 20 out of 22 assembly segments. The Congress also recaptured Ajmer Lok Sabha constituency in February 2018 when Raghu Sharma defeated Jat’s son, Ramswaroop Lamba.

Pilot, 41, fought his first assembly election in 2018 from Tonk where the party broke the 46-year-old record of fielding a Muslim candidate. He defeated BJP’s Yunus Khan, who was a late entry into the fray after his party changed its earlier nominee, by 54,179 votes. Khan was BJP’s lone Muslim candidate. He was the public works department and transport minister in the Vasundhara Raje government and considered de-facto number 2 in Rajasthan’s corridors of power.

The party rewarded Pilot for taking its numbers from 21 to 99 in five years. For three days after the results of 2018 assembly elections were announced, Gujjars in several places in Rajasthan have been demanding that Pilot be made the chief minister, but the party leadership has favoured experience over young dynamism.

For full coverage on assembly elections, click here