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Sunday, 16 October 2011

If I win, it won’t be just because of Anna

Even as the impending Hisar election result is being seen as a test case for the electoral impact of social activist Anna Hazare, late Haryana chief minister Bhajan Lal’s son Kuldeep Bishnoi plays down the Anna impact in the result, which will be out on Monday.  The Team Anna had campaigned against the Congress in the Haryana town, asking people not to vote for the party.

Bishnoi, the candidate of the Haryana Janhit Congress and BJP combine, is locked in a battle with INLD’s Ajay Singh Chautala and Congress’ Jai Parkash. Both Bishnoi and Chautala have supported Anna’s anti-graft campaign.

“I hope to win but it will be not only because of the Anna factor. I have the legacy of my father’s work, people have hopes in me, our alliance with the BJP has strengthened our position and I also have a clean image,” Bishnoi told Hindustan Times in a freewheeling chat after the polling and two days ahead of counting.

“The Anna factor is the fifth one, and became important in the last four-five days of the campaign.”

Bishnoi has another complaint. He believes that rather than asking for a negative vote against the Congress, Team Anna should have asked people to vote for him.

“Team Anna should not have asked for just negative vote against the Congress but a positive vote for me, as Chautala too is facing corruption charges.”

Bishnoi, however, said he fully supported Anna’s effort to fight graft —like LK Advani’s anti-corruption Yatra —she stood with anyone who was against corruption.

Bishnoi, who is seen by his supporters as the tallest non-Jat face in Haryana’s politics— on the lines of his late father — says he stands for farmers’ movements against land acquisition as there should be “balanced development”.

“Rahul Gandhi went to Bhatta-Parsaul... why has he not come to Haryana to take up the land acquisition issue?”Bishnoi, however, did not attack Mayawati’s memorial for Dalit leaders, but says spending money on the poor would have been a greater Shraddhanjali (tribute) to them.


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