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BJP went all out to woo tribals BJP went all out to woo tribals

Dec-03-2013 | 0 Comments


JAIPUR: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), keeping in mind its previous losses atthe reserved tribal seats in eastern and southern Rajasthan, this time had asked its senior functionaries to draw an elaborate plan to appease the tribals in Banswara, Dungarpur, Pratapgarh and Udaipur.

In 2003, the BJP had thrived on the Meena, Bhil and Garasia votes and won 22 tribal seats, but in 2008 elections because of the Kirori Lal Meena's factor BJP could win only three tribal seats while the Congress won 18.

V P Singh, two time Lok Sabha member from Bhilwara, three time MLA from Asind and now a Rajya Sabha member visited the area and met the local tribal leaders. He found that as all the seats in the area were reserved for the tribals other general castes seemed disinterested. In Banswara the total population of the tribals is 72 per cent andin Dungarpur itis62 per cent.

"I found that as all the seats are reservedfor thetribals, the tribal votes get divided and other castes, particularly Rajputs become the deciding factor. Thus I found that Rajputs and other castes can influence the tribals and I started getting the other castes involved in bringing the tribal leaders to the BJP fold. Other castes would vote for the BJP tribal candidate and in a divided situation it is the other caste's vote that would enable the BJP candidatetowin,"said VP Singh.

He added, "Earlier the BJP and JD (U) because of tribal guru Mama Baleshwar Dayal had an understanding. But in the last elections both the parties were on their own, resulting in BJP getting two seats and JD(U) getting one. This time I decided to field Bhimaa Bhai against Fateh Singh, the JD (U) leader from Kushalgarh. Similarly, other JD (U) leaders were brought to the BJP fold. We did the same in Pratapgarh and Udaipur also."VP Singhsaid that BJP has fielded two tribals in the general seats as the tribals hold the key to these two seats because of their large presence. He added that the process of support of the tribals would also help the party in a dozen other seats where the tribals arein significant numbers on the general seats.

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