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  India   All India  10 Jun 2018  Congress eyes BJP’s votebank in Madhya Pradesh

Congress eyes BJP’s votebank in Madhya Pradesh

THE ASIAN AGE. | RABINDRA NATH CHOUDHURY
Published : Jun 10, 2018, 4:56 am IST
Updated : Jun 10, 2018, 4:56 am IST

Sindhis who have strong presence in 20 assembly constituencies in MP have migrated from Pakistan six decades ago.

Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan (Photo: PTI)
 Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan (Photo: PTI)

Bhopal: In a bid to make inroads into BJP’s vote base in Madhya Pradesh, the  Congress is trying to woo the considered traditional vote banks of the saffron party, ahead of the November assembly polls.

In an apparent attempt to cash-in on the alleged marginalisation of the Union minister Uma Bharti in BJP, Congress has begun efforts to reach out to Lodhi community, who are believed to influence the poll outcomes in 90 out of total 230 assembly constituencies in MP.

Ms Bharti, who considered arch rival of chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, earlier on February 11 declared to quit electoral politics on health grounds. However, she made it clear that she would campaign for the party in the coming polls.

Ms Bharti, who had to be shifted to Uttar Pradesh from Madhya Pradesh in the last Lok Sabha elections due to her rivalry with Mr Chouhan, has reportedly been sulking ever since she was divested of the prestigious Ganga Rejuvenation portfolio, in the last cabinet reshuffle at the Centre. There are around 80 lakh Lodhi voters in MP.

“MP Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) president Kamal Nath and the state campaign committee chairman, Jyotiraditya Scindia, have been invited to address the state level Lodhi Samaj Sammelan (convention), that is scheduled to held here on June 11”, Congress spokesman here Pankaj Chaturvedy said.

The Congress party’s focus in these elections is on development. Earlier last week, Mr Nath was “invited” to address the Sindhi Samaj Sammelan, where he promised to settle their long standing issues relating to land and other property ownership.

Sindhis who have strong presence in 20 assembly constituencies in MP have migrated from Pakistan six decades ago.

There are around 20 lakh Sindhi voters in the state. However, BJP spokesman, Rajneesh Agrawal, has dismissed the possibility of a probable breach in the party’s traditional vote bank.

“There are no leaderships of these communities in Congress. Both the communities have been with BJP for the past five decades. It is a publicity stunt by Congress”, Mr Agrawal said, adding, “Ms Bharti is our senior leader and in the Union cabinet”.

Tags: uma bharti, shivraj singh chouhan
Location: India, Madhya Pradesh, Bhopal