BJP bats on new face local leader Lakhan Mardi
Mail News Service
Jamshedpur, Nov. 13: Ghatshila assembly constituency (a reserved ST seat) is heading for a triangular contest between BJP, JMM and former MLA Pradeep Kumar Balmuchu who joined Ajsu on Tuesday.
Fearing the prevailing anti-incumbency factor, in a calculated move by BJP fielded a local leader Lakhan Mardi.
“We carried out a party survey at Ghashila that revealed that people were not happy with sitting MLA Laxman Tudu. People were targeting sitting MLA Laxman Tuddu for unemployment, closure of copper mines, poor health infrastructure. This would have led to in the form of anti-incumbency factors. It was for this reason that BJP has put Lakhan Mardi, though politically not much well-known, but the only leader fielded by a major political party since creation of Jharkhand, who lives in Ghatshila. By fielding local leader, the party wants to deal with the anti-incumbency factor as people feel that a leader staying in Ghatshila will be with them and help in eradicating local problems,” said a senior BJP leader.
He said that the party has taken a right decision by fielding local leader, who understands the issues better.
Three times Ghatshila MLA and former Rajya Sabha member from Jharkhand, Pradeep Kumar Balmuchu is based in Sonari in Jamshedpur, while JMM candidate Ramdas Soren (who won in 2009 election) stays in Loabasa under Govindpur police station in Jamshedpur while sitting MLA Laxman Tuddu stays in Kadma.
BJP candidate, Lakhan Mardi an advocate by profession whose only electoral experience was as an Independent candidate in 2009 Lok Sabha polls where he could poll only 10,000 votes still stays in rebel hit Jwalkata area of Ghurabandha and spends most of his time at Ghatshila College hostel near Phooldungri which is close to Ghatshila court.
“He has shown results over the years. Working at the grass root level, he has been for BJP for the last few years in Ghatshila and had even campaigned for party candidates amongst tribal in Assam. He is also the BJP ST morcha state vice-president and member of the state 20-point program committee,” said East Singhbhum BJP district president Dinesh Kumar Sahu.
On the other hand JMM leader, Ramdas Soren is eying tribal votes which made him MLA in 2009 (polled 38283) with Pradeep Kumar Balmuchu placed second with 37091. While in 2014 Ramdas had to be in second position polling 46103 votes against winner Lakshman Tuddu of BJP – 52506 and Cindrella Balmuchu, daughter of Pradeep Balmuchu in the third position with 36672.
“ The local people are reeling under misrule of BJP led Government and they are looking for a change. There is strong wave against the BJP government especially amongst tribal and this will work in our favour. We will win the seat this time,’ said Soren.
However, some political analysts opined that Balmuchu entry might hit prospects for Ramdas Soren.