INTERVIEW |Will fight in dignified way: Krishna Poonia

Krishna Poonia

The Congress Party's Candidate for Jaipur Rural, Krishna Poonia, an international gold-medalist Indian discus thrower, Olympics participant, Padma Shri awardee, and the current MLA from Sadulpur is trying her best to woo voters in her constituency. She will be fighting against former Olympian and sitting MP Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore. Excerpts of her interview with Tabeenah Anjum of Deccan Herald:

You are a sitting Congress MLA from Sadulpur constituency in Churu. But now Congress has fielded you as an MP candidate from Jaipur Rural. How is the response from the public?

The Jaipur Rural Lok Sabha Constituency is not new to me. After joining Congress party in 2013, a few months later during Lok Sabha 2014, I had extensively travelled here with CP Joshi, the then Congress's candidate from Jaipur rural, I had visited most of the assembly segments. But after being nominated this time, when I revisited Jaipur Rural I could sense the excitement in the public. All of them recognise me. While some take me as an athlete, for many I am a farmer's daughter.

 You have been an international gold-medalist discus thrower and now a politician. What are the challenges you face?

I am already people's representative so I know it's my duty to think about their welfare. There is no challenge but voters have a lot of expectations from me because they know I am a sportsperson and they expect me to work with the same zeal and energy.

 What are the key issues of Jaipur Rural constituency?

Not much has been done in the constituency. I see a lot of dissatisfaction among people towards the BJP government and the former MP Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore. Drinking water, education and issues related to NH 8 (Jaipur - Delhi) are the major concerns of people here. Youths feel they have been cheated by the past government. For instance a stadium in Chitrakoot is still under construction.

Are you alleging that BJP's sitting MP Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore failed to deliver?

When he became sports minister, the fraternity including me were content but five years later people are shattered. Youth and sports persons are unsatisfied with the past government. There are piles of complaints. 

You both have made India proud in sports world. But in this elections you fighting against Rajyavardhan Rathore who is the minister of two important ministries. Does this thought scare you?

It is a war between two ideologies. I will fight in a dignified way without attacking him personally. But he has not been able to deliver as a minister.

Now if people elect you what difference will you make?

I will focus on overall development — youth, quality of education, sports facilities, facilities for women and creating jobs in rural areas. I will try to implement all points from 2019 manifesto of Congress party.

Many believe that Congress has projected you against Rathore because you are a Jat candidate, since Jaipur Rural Constituency has highest number of Jat voters. What do you have to say?

I come from a sports background. I am a citizen, a sportsman, a woman who still does all her household chores including milking a cow and washing clothes. Caste politics does not impress me at all. Urban people connect with me because of my sports background and rural voters especially women see a shadow of themselves in me. I am thankful to Congress party for trusting in me.

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INTERVIEW |Will fight in dignified way: Krishna Poonia

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