Home Dehradun Bobby Panwar declares intention to contest assembly bypoll

Bobby Panwar declares intention to contest assembly bypoll

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By Arun Pratap Singh

Dehradun, 26 Apr: Srinagar: It may be recalled that Bobby Panwar, President of the ‘Unemployed Union’, is among those contesting the ongoing Parliamentary Polls. He is contesting from Tehri Parliamentary constituency as an independent. Some believe that he has polled at least enough votes to create some tension for the BJP as well as Congress candidates Mala Rajya Laxmi and Jot Singh Gunsola, respectively. They also claim that both the parties are confused whether Panwar’s contest is beneficial or damaging for their candidates.

Perhaps encouraged by the political and media hype created by him, Panwar has now declared his intention to contest the Badrinath Assembly polls as well as the upcoming municipal polls. It may be recalled that Badrinath Assembly constituency is likely to have a bypoll in coming weeks as the seat has fallen vacant following resignation of sitting MLA and the then Congress leader Rajendra Bhandari from the seat as well as from the Congress party. Bhandari has since joined the BJP. In addition, the Manglaur seat in district Haridwar will also have a bypoll after the seat became vacant due to the sudden demise of sitting MLA and BSP leader Sarbat Karim Ansari. It is not clear whether Panwar or his nominee will also contest from the Manglaur seat or not.

Political pundits claim that while it is very challenging for independents or for the leaders from smaller regional parties in Uttarakhand to put up a strong fight in the Parliamentary election, it is relatively much easier to strongly fight the assembly or the Urban or the Panchayat elections. Panwar probably realises this and wants to keep alive his political ambitions. As a Union President of Berozgar Sangh (Union of the Unemployed) of Uttarakhand, he is popular among the youth but it is not easy to say how much of that popularity can convert into votes for him in any election. This remains to be seen. Panwar says that the union will also field its candidates in Badrinath by-election, municipal body and nagar panchayat elections. In Uttarakhand, it has not been easy for the independents or leaders even from various regional parties to make a formidable political career as the electorate has mostly preferred the two national parties in most elections. Whatever influence the parties like SP, BSP or the UKD had in the past has also waned with every election. Interestingly, Panwar is not the only independent candidate to make headlines in the ongoing parliamentary elections. Independent MLA from Khanpur Assembly constituency (District Haridwar) Umesh Kumar has also contested Parliamentary Elections from Haridwar Parliamentary Constituency. He has also managed to create some media hype in these elections.