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Churu MP may get Jat support to script Congress win in BJP stronghold

Kaswan, a Jat, holds considerable influence in the community that forms at least 15 per cent of the total population of Rajasthan and thus, 15 per cent of the vote share too.
Last Updated : 11 March 2024, 11:47 IST

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Jaipur: After BJP denied him the Lok Sabha ticket from Churu, an angry tweet by Rajasthan MP Rahul Kaswan gave enough indication that he would quit the party and join Congress instead.

Sure enough, Kaswan, 47, tweeted today morning that he was quitting BJP. However, the tweet also thanked BJP leaders, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Amit Shah and J P Nadda for providing him the opportunity to serve the people of Churu for 10 years.

He also profusely thanked the people of Churu for letting him serve them. Before he joined Congress though, Kaswan had unleashed his ire over BJP denying him the ticket, asking what his fault was as he had served his people to the best of his abilities in his earlier tweet.

After joining Congress, Kaswan said BJP has been consistently ignoring the farmers’ plight and the party’s feudalistic mindset was taking precedence and has become the norm and that he was joining Congress to voice the farmers’ concern. Farmers in Rajasthan meanwhile are taking out a tractor rally and plan to congregate in Jaipur to press their demand for a MSP law.

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge formally inducted Kaswan into Congress at his residence in Delhi today. It is being speculated that Kaswan will be Congress’s candidate from Churu constituency.

Congress had reportedly been wooing Kaswan and sending him feelers since rumors started circulating that BJP may drop him from their Lok Sabha candidate list from Rajasthan.

BJP has pinned hopes on newbie and paralympian champion Devendra Jhajhariya from Churu this time. Congress has been losing the Churu Lok Sabha constituency for many years now.

Rahul Kaswan political career so far

Kaswan has been the BJP candidate from Churu for the last two terms. Before that Kaswan’s father, Ram Singh Kaswan, had won the seat for BJP in 1999, 2004 and 2009. Being a BJP bastion, this time Congress may have some chance with Kaswan as its candidate.

Kaswan, a Jat, holds considerable influence in the community that forms at least 15 per cent of the total population of Rajasthan and thus, 15 per cent of the vote share too. Jats are said to be miffed with BJP over farmers issue, handling of women wrestlers matter and the belittling of Jats in the new BJP government in Rajasthan.

BJP veteran leader Rajendra Rathore, who also hails from the Churu belt, is said to have been instrumental in the party’s denial of ticket to Kaswan.

Rathore has been obliquely targeting Kaswan and his father calling them 'Jaichand'. The jibe references Jaichand, a Rajput king, who was considered the traitor responsible for the defeat of Prithviraj Chauhan against the invading Afghan ruler Mohammad Ghori, in the second battle of Tarain. Rathore is said to have complained to the BJP high command regarding Kaswan as well.

Rumours of Kaswan’s hand in the defeat of Rathore from Taranagar Assembly constituency in November 2023 polls have been doing the rounds for quite a while.

Kaswan’s joining Congress may seem like settling scores with BJP as two former Congress ministers Lalchand Kataria and Rajendra Yadav and a number of MLAs joined BJP yesterday in the desert state.

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Published 11 March 2024, 11:47 IST

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