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In Gujarat, Cong nominee gives up even before counting

Ahmedabad, May 1, 2014, DHNS: 1:40 IST
A day after polling in Gujarat, the Congress suffered a huge embarrassment on Thursday.

Party nominee from Jamnagar Lok Sabha constituency Vikram Madam came out in the open during the day to announce that he would lose the election to his niece and BJP nominee Poonam Madam by a margin of some 30, 000 votes. Addressing the media during the day, he asked his supporters not bet on poll results. The counting of votes is scheduled for May 16.

Vikram Madam is a prominent Ahir community leader and the party leadership was betting on his victory. The BJP had, however, made it difficult for him by engineering the defection of his niece Poonam, a sitting Congress legislator, then, ahead of 2012 state Assembly elections.

Sources claim that Poonam’s chances of trouncing her rivals was very strong since she enjoyed the backing of a Jamnagar-based corporate honcho of a leading company of the country.

Further, the BJP had strengethened its position in the Jamnagar constituency by managing to get a key Congress leader of the area, Jitu Lal to work against Vikram Madam. Jitu, who had lost two Assembly polls by narrow margins, played a major role to queer the pitch for Vikram Madam against his niece, Congress party sources said.

Vikram Madam told reporters that he was a pragmatic person who did not run away from the reality.

In Wednesday’s polling state wide, the Jamnagar constituency had recorded a polling of 57.42 per cent, almost 5 per cent below the 62 per cent polling recorded in the state. The party had considered the Jamnagar constituency in the Saurashtra region of the state as one of the ‘safer’ seats for the Congress.

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