Why BJP is Reluctant to Field Jaipur’s Former Royal Princess From Rajasthan’s Rajsamand Seat
The local Rajput groups in Rajastan have made a formal appeal to the BJP to reconsider its decision of fielding Diya Kumari from Rajsamand.
File photo of former Sawai Madhopur MLA Diya Kumari
New Delhi: The BJP is witnessing a strange predicament in Rajasthan’s Rajsamand Lok Sabha seat. The candidate which the party has almost finalised for the south Rajasthan seat faces a strong backlash from the local Mewar Rajputs because she is a Rajput from the royal family of Jaipur.
A strong antipathy of Jaipur Rajputs has come close to scuttling the chances of Diya Kumari from getting a BJP ticket from Rajsamand, according to a report by The Tribune.
The saffron party is reportedly reluctant to field Jaipur’s former royal princess because it may irate Mewar voters as the centuries-old friendship of Akbar and Jaipur’s Raja Mansingh will come to the fore. Raising the Akbar-Mansingh controversy, supporters of the Rawat community had already lodged a protest to the party high command.
Reports filed in local Rajasthani media claim that local Rajput bodies, one of which is Mewar Kshatriya Mahasabha, with some political clout have made a formal appeal to the BJP to reconsider its decision of fielding Kumari from Rajsamand. According to some local dailies, both the Mewar royal family and former chief minister Vasundhara Raje are opposed to her candidature.
One of the reasons for the BJP’s decision to allow Kumari, a former MLA of Sawai Madhopur, to fight from Rajsamand is that this Lok Sabha seat is a Rajput dominant constituency on which more often than not a Rajput is voted to power. A case in point is the BJP’s Hari Om Singh Rathore, who won from here on a BJP ticket in 2014, and Gopal Singh of Congress who won the seat in 2009.
And Kumari is a popular Rajput, at least in her own Jaipur region. She is the daughter of the erstwhile Maharaja of Jaipur, Sawai Bhawani Singh.
While the BJP may be calculating the pros or cons of finalising their candidate in Rajsamand, the Congress has interestingly fielded a Gujjar candidate from the seat – 73-year-old Devkinandan Gujjar. One reason for this apparently counter-intuitive move could be to compensate for the lack of Gujjar candidates in the other seats by the Congress.
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