'Sonrise': Raman successor on scene

'Sonrise': Raman successor on scene

Abhishek Singh could have taken the oft-trodden professional path like scores of others who have engineering and management degrees. But politics is in his blood and he has given in to his true calling.

Abhishek, son of Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Dr Raman Singh, is making his political debut from Rajnandgaon, once represented by his father in Parliament.

Dr Singh is now a legislator from Rajnandgaon Assembly seat. Polling here is scheduled for April 17.

And this is the latest case of ‘son-rise’ in Chhattisgarh. “Just because my father is in politics does not mean I do not have the right to join politics and contribute to society. Politics is a powerful medium for societal contribution,” Abhishek told Deccan Herald, after addressing a rally here along with BJP president Rajnath Singh on Friday.

Dr Singh became the chief minister of Chhattisgarh in 2003. In the same year, Abhishek completed his mechanical engineering degree from National Institute Technology, Raipur.

Later, he got a management degree from Xavier Labour Research Institute, Jamshedpur. However, the 33 year old ventured into serious politics and took active part in the 2013 Assembly poll campaign.

“I was given the responsibility of Kawardha and Pandariya. We won both seats and defeated a master strategist like Congress’ Md Akbar in Kawardha,” he said. It was during the 2013 Assembly contest that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi had commented that had it been the Congress, Abhishek would have surely got a ticket because of his father. He was making an obvious reference to Amit Jogi — former chief minister Ajit Jogi’s son, who is now an MLA from Marwahi constituency.

Incidentally, two other Congress leader’s sons were given tickets by the party.
Deepak Karma is contesting the 2014 Lok Sabha elections from Bastar, while Umesh Patel contested and won from Kharsia in the 2013 Assembly polls.

Maoist attack

Their fathers, Mahendra Karma and Nand Kumar Patel, were among the 25 Congress leaders who were slain by Maoists in Darba Ghati last May.

BJP MP from Bastar, Dinesh Kashyap, too contested and won the Bastar Lok Sabha polls in 2011 after his father Baliram Kashyap, who was the Bastar MP, passed away.

Asked about dynastic politics in the saffron party, Abhishek said, “It has become fashionable to talk about dynastic politics. But you will have to see if the process of candidate selection is right or not. I have worked in these areas for the past seven-eight years and it was the party’s decision to choose me based on local surveys.”

The BJP did not give a ticket to sitting MP Madhusudan Yadav, but there was barely any protest within the party. Locals suggest that the Congress has virtually staged a walkover by pitting a weak candidate, Kamleshwar Verma, against Abhishek.

The debutant, however, is not taking it lightly. He is spending close to 14 hours on the road every day. “It will be a mistake to underestimate any opponent,” he said.

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