BHOPAL: If and when the state Congress chooses to analyse the reasons for its rout in the recently concluded by-elections to the 28 Vidhan Sabha constituencies in the state, it would do well to dwell on the fact that people are fed up of its old faces. An analysis of the results shows that, out of the nine MLAs of the party who won in the bypolls, eight were new faces.
The difference between the votes polled by the BJP and the Congress was just one-half per cent in the 2018 polls. However, the BJP has managed to increase the gap in the bypolls. And the Congress’s reverses mainly came from the constituencies where the party had fielded old faces. They all have lost with huge margins.
None of the Congress winners is more than 60 years of age. The seniormost among them is Suresh Raje, 59, elected from Dabra. The same had happened in the 2018 polls, too. Most of the Congress MLAs elected at that time were first-timers.
This is also true of the Congress organisation, which is overflowing with old faces. On the other hand, the BJP’s central leadership had made it clear that none of the district presidents should be older than 50. The age of mandal presidents was capped at 35.
In the by-elections, the oldest Congress candidate was Harivallabh Shukla. The 76-year-old veteran leader was fielded from Pohri. He not only lost, but ended up at the third position. KL Agarwal, 72, had joined the Congress after quitting the BJP. In the 2018 elections, the BJP had denied a ticket to Agarwal and he had contested as an Independent, garnering 28,000 votes. In the by-elections, he was fielded by the Congress and lost by a margin of over 52,000 votes.
Congress seniors who lost
Badnawar: Kamal Singh Patel, 65
Sanwer: Premchand Guddu, 60
Nepanagar: Ramkishan Patel, 55
Bamori: KL Agarwal, 72
Bhander: Phool Singh Baraiyya, 58
Pohri: Harivallabh Shukla, 73
Fresh faces who won
Morena: Rakesh Mawai, 46
Agar: Vipin Vankhede, 32
Gwalior-East: Satish Sikarwar, 49
Karera: Pranilal Jatav, 49
Dimni: Ravindra Singh Tomar, 46
Sumaoli: Ajab Singh Kushwaha, 49
Biaora: Ramchandra Dangi, 52
Gohad: Mewaram Jatav, 53
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