Badnawar (Madhya Pradesh): Speculation and anticipation loom over the constituency as citizens eagerly await the announcement of their new MLA. The electoral battle was far from one-sided, with the Congress strategically fielding former BJP stalwart Bhanwar Singh Shekhawat as their candidate.
Shekhawat's entry into Congress injected enthusiasm among party workers, turning the electoral contest into a fiercely fought competition. Despite facing health challenges, BJP candidate and minister Rajvardhan Singh Dattigaon engaged in an exhaustive 20-hour daily campaign.
BJP's stronghold in Badnawar, coupled with Dattigaon's track record of development initiatives, Ladli Lakshmi Yojana and employment generation has generated optimism among his supporters.
Two significant rallies featuring home minister Amit Shah and star campaigner Jyotiraditya Scindia further bolstered BJP's campaign. In the 2018 assembly elections, Dattigaon triumphed over Shekhawat by 41,000 votes, while in 2020 by-election Congress's Kamal Singh Patel was defeated by 31,000 votes.
Despite these past victories, Congress supporters remain confident in Shekhawat's triumph, citing overwhelming support from tribal community and discontent among villagers over issues like water logging and industrial development.
Allegations of internal strife in BJP camp emerged during the campaign, with reports of prominent leaders distancing themselves from active participation. Resentment among volunteers over house demolitions and arrests further hinted at internal discord.
Meanwhile, Congress maintained a relatively united front throughout the election season. Congress successfully mobilised youth support, particularly with inclusion of former BJP member Jaideep Singh Jimmy Bana.
As both parties await the election results, each is fervently claiming victory based on their narratives and analyses of electoral landscape in Badnawar. The outcome remains uncertain, hinging on the diverse factors that have shaped this closely watched political contest.