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Hooda comfortable on home turf but BJP promises to make it a fight

NEW DELHI: BJP ko ek ek vote, parivarvaad pe gehri chot (Each vote to BJP will be a blow to dynasty politics), says BJP candidate Satish Kumar Nandal as he claims he will create history in Garhi Sampla-Kiloi seat by defeating former chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda.

The task looks an uphill one in this assembly seat of Rohtak district which is a Hooda family stronghold despite Hooda and his son Deepender losing the Sonepat and Rohtak Lok Sabha seats, respectively, three months ago.

Significantly, Congress has still maintained a lead in the Garhi Sampla-Kiloi assembly segment though it lost the Rohtak Lok Sabha seat. Hooda also won the assembly seat comfortably in 2009 and 2014 though his margin reduced to 47,000 votes from about 72,000. The INLD candidate he defeated on both occassions, Satish Kumar Nandal, joined the BJP earlier this year. BJP president Amit Shah held a rally in the next-door Meham on Wednesday with Nandal on the stage and launched an attack on Hooda.

“My constituency is ashamed of Hooda now…he has defamed the region by his corruption scams. Last five years, the area’s people never even saw him here. The area has been gagged by dynasty and it is time to free the people from the same. I am in a very strong party (BJP) now,” Nandal told ET.

INLD and JJP parties have also put up candidates but the main contest is expected between the Congress and BJP only.

Hooda’s camp, however, sees smooth sailing for their leader in Garhi Sampla-Kiloi, especially after he was appointed the Congress legislative party leader and his detractor Ashok Tanwar was sidelined by the party. “We in fact hope a positive impact in the entire Jat belt of Haryana,” a senior Congress leader said.

Source: Economic Times