Ujjain : Hectic parleys are being held in Congress circles in New Delhi to fix some criterion to finalise the list of candidates for the Assembly elections. Reports indicate that the party would consider only the “winnability factor” in choosing its candidates and for that matter, three surveys, including two on behalf of the All India Congress Committee and one on behalf of Pradesh Congress Committee were conducted recently.
According to sources, the track record of probable candidates was also being considered and it has been seen that whether they lost two continuous elections from a particular seat. Likewise, if such persons tasted defeats again and again may also have to undergo frustration. On the winnability factor, names of Dilip Singh Gurjar, Surendra Singh Sisodia and Premchand Guddu have been prominently emerged from Nagda-Khachrod, Barnagar and Alot constituency, respectively.
But, if criterion of losing elections twice or during different times is given preference, all of these three leaders may be denied tickets at the last moment. By and large, all of them have dominated the politics of Ujjain district and Ujjain Parliamentary constituency (which covers 8 assembly segments including 7 of Ujjain district and one of Ratlam district) since 1993. Moreover, Gurjar has maintained his hold continuously on the Nagda-Khachrod constituency for last 25 years. Gurjar fought the election for the first time in 1993 and won, but was denied ticket in 1998 election as the party candidate lost from the constituency in the Lok Sabha election by over 10, 000 votes. He, however, managed the ticket for his close relative named Babulal Gurjar, though he lost the election.
Gurjar won 2003 election again, but as a rebel Congress candidate. He won 2008 election on a Congress ticket, but lost 2013 election. According to sources, the party high command knows Gurjar’s winnability factor in wake of 30, 000 voters of his community in the constituency, but his fragmented defeats and rebellion nature may go against him this time. Sisodia’s family maintains dominance in the Barnagar constituency for last 50 years. He won 1993 election, but since the party denied ticket in 1998 election as the party candidate suffered defeat in Lok Sabha election by over 10, 000 votes in the constituency he managed the ticket for his younger brother Virendra who won that election.
Virendra Singh was made Congress candidate again in 2003 election, but he lost. As the Congress denied ticket to both Sisodia brothers in 2008 and preferred Murli Morwal, who lost that election, Surendra Singh Sisodia contested election as Independent candidate and lost. In 2013 election, party preferred Mahesh Patel, but he also failed to register victory. Noticing that non-Sisodia candidates have lost last couple of elections and that the Rajput community has a strength of about 30, 000 voters in the constituency, the Congress bigwigs have reportedly focussed on the claims of Sisodia brothers. It is learnt that Surendra Singh may be the choice of the party, but again keeping in mind the criterion he may be dropped as he not only lost the seat, but also became rebellion. Similar is the case of Virendra Singh as he also tasted defeat and non-Sisodias have shown their strong presence over the years, though remained away from victory. When Free Press talked to one of the probable Congress candidate, he hoped that the defeat factor would not be given priority and only winnability factor will work. Guddu’s case is very interesting.
He belongs to Indore and represents Sanwer Assembly constituency once and lost from there once. He then switched over to Alot constituency, but lost 1996 by-election from there. He again tested his fate from Alot in 1998 and 2003 elections, but registered victory only once. Then he fought parliamentary election from Ujjain in 2004, but lost. However, he emerged victorious in 2009 elections and became MP. In 2013 elections, he managed ticket for his son Ajeet Borasi from Alot, who lost. Guddu himself lost 2014 parliamentary election, but he is presently lobbying for ticket from Alot seat. Sources said if the party prefers criterion of continuous defeats, Guddu will then seek ticket for his son again. (firstname.lastname@example.org)