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BJP, Congress bank on defectors in Morena

While the Congress is eyeing the seat it had last won in 1991 through a BJP family scion, the BJP too is working on a counter plan of banking on desertions from other parties.

BJP congressBHOPAL : As the Lok Sabha polls move into the third phase in Madhya Pradesh, the spotlight will be on the Gwalior-Chambal region — the most fiercely contested region in the 2023 assembly polls, where BJP won 18 and Congress finished a close second with 16 seats.

While the region houses four seats — Guna, Gwalior, Bhind-SC and Morena — the last one, Morena, seems to be emerging as the hottest and toughest.

Spread across eight assembly segments in Morena and Sheopur districts bordering Rajasthan, Morena is famous for being the land of the sweet Gajak (sweet prepared with sesame and jaggery), the expanding Banmore Industrial Area, and the Kuno National Park (KNP), which is home to African cheetahs since September 2022.

The constituency, which houses around 20.04 lakh voters (10.70 lakh males, 9.34 lakh females and 24 third gender), has turned into a BJP citadel since 1996, with former Morena mayor Ashok Argal, infamous for being allegedly involved in the 2008 cash-for-votes scandal, winning the seat four times in a row between 1996 and 2004.

With the BSP too being a formidable player, the contest this time in Morena appears to be three-cornered, but as per political observers, the battle may ultimately boil down to the BJP and Congress. The BSP may largely play a spoiler for either of the two main parties.

Aiming to snatch the seat from the BJP, the Congress has fielded Satyapal Singh Neetu Sikarwar, the son of a BJP leader. The younger son of BJP veteran and two-time former BJP MLA from Morena Lok Sabha seat’s Sumaoli assembly segment Gajraj Singh Sikarwar, the Congress candidate had won the seat in 2013 assembly polls on BJP ticket.

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