Jaipur: The ruling Congress has scored an emphatic win in by-elections to two assembly seats -- Vallabhnagar and Dhariavad -- in Rajasthan. The party not only won its seat but added one to its tally, whereas the BJP was a straggler -- fourth in Vallabhnagar and third in Dhariavad. The BJP experiment to field new faces failed miserably and independent and regional party candidates gave a tough fight to both the mainstream parties.
The BJP desperately needed a win in this by-poll as the party has secured just one seat in seven by-polls held in Rajasthan since the last assembly elections. Commenting on the results, BJP state president Satish Punia said, ‘‘the defeat is natural, circumstantial and the result was dependant on local equations. We’ll draw lessons and move forward.’’
Talking to the media he denied that inflation played any role in the outcome; however, Congress state president Govind Singh Dotasara said ‘‘the issues of inflation and farm bills are affecting the people and the BJP has failed to address them.’’
The BJP experiment went awry in Dharivad where instead of playing the sympathy card by giving a ticket to the son of the deceased MLA Gautamlal Meena, the party chose Khet Singh Meena. This seat was considered a bastion of the BJP as the deceased MLA had a good hold over it. He was also close to former CM Vasundhar Raje.
Interestingly, Raje did not campaign for both the seats though she was proclaimed as a star campaigner.
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