News Brief

How Jyotiraditya Scindia Rules BJP, Congress Candidates List For Madhya Pradesh Polls, Despite Not Contesting Himself

Nishtha Anushree

Oct 25, 2023, 06:05 PM | Updated 06:05 PM IST

Jyotiraditya Scindia
Jyotiraditya Scindia
  • BJP fielded 18 of the 25 Scindia loyalists who joined after leaving Congress.
  • Some of Scindia's supporters who had previously left the BJP to rejoin the grand old party have been given tickets.
  • As Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Congress have announced names of candidates for almost all seats for the Madhya Pradesh Assembly elections, it is now evident that Jyotiraditya Scindia loyalists have been included in the lists of both parties.

    Out of the 25 key loyalists who joined BJP with Scindia, 18 incumbent MLAs have been fielded by the saffron party. However, seven Scindia loyalists bypolls have lost their tickets.

    Of these, OPS Bhadoria (Mehgaon), Munna Lal Goyal (Gwalior East), Raksha Sanoria (Bhander), and Sumitra Devi Kasdekar (Nepanagar) had won the 2020 bypolls but still lost their ticket.

    The other three Scindia loyalists who didn't get a ticket are Giriraj Dandotiya (Dimni), Ranveer Jatav (Gohad), and Jaswant Jatav (Karera). They had lost in the 2020 bypolls.

    Meanwhile, 10 sitting ministers, namely Pradyuman Singh Tomar, Tulsi Silavat, Rajvardhan Singh Dattigoan, Prabhuram Chaudhary, Govind Singh Rajput, Bisahulal Singh, Hardeep Singh Dang, Mahendra Singh Sisodia, Pradyuman Singh Lodhi, and Suresh Dhakad, got tickets.

    Other five nominated incumbent MLAs are Jaipal Singh Jajji from Ashok Nagar, Kamlesh Jatav from Ambah in Morena, Brajendra Singh Yadav from Mungaoli in Ashok Nagar, Manoj Chaudhary from Hatpipliya in Dewas, and Narayan Patel from Mandhata in Nimad.

    In a bold move, the BJP leadership has decided to renominate three loyalists of Scindia who had previously lost the 2020 bypolls after defecting, despite the potential backlash from the party's disenchanted long-time members. These are former minister of women and child development, Imarti Devi from Dabra constituency in Gwalior, Aidal Singh Kansana and Raghuraj Singh Kansana are from Sumawali and Morena respectively.

    It is interesting to note that even within the Congress party, some of Scindia's supporters who had previously left the BJP to rejoin the grand old party have been given tickets. This includes Bodhi Singh Bhagat (Katangi, Balaghat), Samandar Patel (Jawad, Neemuch), and Baijnath Yadav (Kolaras, Shivpuri), who was chosen over the incumbent MLA and former Scindia loyalist Virendra Raghuvanshi.

    While cabinet colleagues of Scindia from Madhya Pradesh such as Prahlad Patel, Narendra Singh Tomar, and Faggan Kulaste are contesting elections, the BJP leadership has chosen not to field Scindia.

    Indian Express quoted a Scindia loyalist, “Maharaj ka chal gaya (Scindia’s wishes were fulfilled). He managed to get tickets for all his close supporters. None of the main leaders left his camp. He will also not contest the election and will not be risking his political career. He is liked by Modi and Amit Shah, they have big plans for him.”

    A leader from the Congress party in the Gwalior-Chambal region expressed concern about Scindia's political future, stating that he is still at risk. It is crucial for his loyalists to win the election in order to safeguard his career. Supporters such as Govind Singh and Imarti Devi are facing a challenging situation.

    The BJP spokesperson, Pankaj Chaturvedi, responded by stating that the Congress lacks understanding of the BJP ideology and views politics through the lens of factions. He emphasised that the Scindia loyalists are all dedicated BJP workers, and highlighted Scindia's seniority and his successful fulfillment of significant responsibilities within the party.

    Nishtha Anushree is Senior Sub-editor at Swarajya. She tweets at @nishthaanushree.

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