After LS polls, all eyes on by-elections on five seats that fell vacant in Rajasthan

Jaipur, June 10 (IANS) Following the Lok Sabha elections, all eyes are now set on the Assembly bypolls to be held on five seats in Rajasthan which fell vacant after the sitting MLAs contested and emerged winners in the general elections.

Out of these five Assembly seats, three were held by the Congress and one each by the Rashtriya Loktantrik Party (RLP) and the Bharat Adivasi Party (BAP).

The leaders of the respective parties have confirmed that they have now started preparing for the ensuing by-elections.

While the BJP is planning to balance the social engineering equation on these seats, the Congress, as per its leaders, is planning to field the sons and daughters of the current and former MPs on these seats buoyed by their success in the LS polls.

MLAs Murari Lal Meena (Congress) from Dausa, Harish Meena (Congress) from Deoli Uniara, Brijendra Ola (Congress) from Jhunjhunu, Hanuman Beniwal (RLP) from Khinvsar, and Rajkumar Roat (BTP) from Chaurasi were fielded as LS candidates by their respective parties, and all five emerged on the winning side.

The by-elections will now be held on these five Assembly seats within the next six months.

After winning 24 seats in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections in Rajasthan, the BJP’s seat share came down to 14 this time, with many citing the party’s ‘weak’ social engineering strategy as one of the main reasons for the drop in the number of seats.

The party doesn’t want to repeat the mistake, and hence wants to balance these questions, sources said.

The BJP is reportedly mulling over organisational changes to balance the caste equations.

Currently, Chittorgarh MP C.P. Joshi is the state BJP President. Some sources claimed that he may be replaced by any OBC, Jat, or Rajput leader.

A section of the Rajput and Jat voters were reportedly not pleased with the party and hence many of them boycotted the LS polls. In such a situation, the party may bring in a new face as the state BJP chief.

The name of Prabhulal Saini is doing the rounds in the political circles of the state, along with those of Rajendra Gehlot, Madan Rathore, and Shravan Bagri.

However, party sources said that an OBC candidate will be preferred to balance the caste equations in places where bypolls are scheduled, including in Jhunjhunu and Dausa where the party lost the LS polls.

Party sources said the bypolls will be another litmus test for the BJP leadership in Rajasthan, given the party’s below-par performance in the Lok Sabha polls.

Senior journalist Manish Godha, however, said the bypolls won’t make much impact in terms of numbers as neither the Congress will be in a position to gain if it wins all the seats, nor the BJP will lose much if it loses the elections.

However, one fact is sure that the BJP will get energised and motivated if it wins these seats as it lost 10 seats in the LS polls as compared to 2019, besides losing the Sri Ganganagar bypolls held soon after the Assembly elections held last year.



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