Eye on Jat vote, Kanwaria invokes Sahib Singh Verma, keeps Parvesh by her side

With the late BJP leader Sahib Singh Verma's son, Parvesh Verma, coming out in full support of the Northwest Delhi candidate Meera Kanwaria, things might just look up for the BJP in this constituency. Verma, like his father, has the blessings of the Jat community.

Earlier, when Verma was denied a party ticket, there were debates in political circles that the Jat population, angry with the party decision, would vote against it.

Verma told Newsline that he is with the party and would sincerely campaign for Kanwaria. Verma said, "I will go door to door in all the villages and ask my community to support the party."

With Verma chipping in, the BJP is now expecting to poll close to 80 per cent of the Jat votes in the constituency. The constituency has approximately 15 per cent (2.5 lakh) Jat votes out of a total of 18 lakh.

People in Kanwaria's area are still loyal supporters of the late Sahib Singh Verma's family. "When the late Sahib Singhji was chief minister, he was concerned about the rights of the rural people, provided electricity and water and constructed flyovers here. The Metro Rail, for which Sheila Dikshit likes to take credit, was also brought to Delhi by him," said Tara Chand Bansal, party leader.

"We need people like Parvesh Verma and Meera Kanwaria who know the problems here and not those who do not even visit the constituency after winning the election," said Mahabir Singh, a voter from Narela.

The BJP and Kanwaria have been promising to follow the footsteps of Sahib Singh Verma for the area's development.

In her 350 public meetings in the last one month, Kanwaria has invoked, without fail, the name of Sahib Singh Verma and promised to follow his example.

"We have also told all party supporters, young BJP leaders, block presidents and others that when they meet people in their homes or at the 1600 polling booths, they must ask for votes reminding them about Sahib Singh Verma's contribution to the area," said Neel Daman Khatri, Narela district president of the BJP.

Kanwaria is also promising voters of rural areas that the Metro Rail would be extended to Bawana, Narela and then Sonepat. "Sahib Singh Verma wanted the Metro to go to Narela and Bawana, but the Congress derailed his hopes," said Bansal.

As a mark of tribute to the late leader, Kanwaria hopped on to the Metro to go to the Election Office to file her nomination.

'Northwest Delhi roads worse than those in Bihar'
After filing her nomination, Kanwaria met reporters. Talking about development work done by the Congress MP in the area, she said, "The roads in the Northwest constituency are worse than those in Bihar".

At the havan at Kanwaria's office in Rohini today, all BJP MLAs were asked to take the campaign door to door. BJP MLA from Rithala Kulwant Rana, said, "Jab Mahatma Gandhi ko goli lagi thi to unke muh se 'hey ram' nikla tha. Inka baap (referring to Gandhi) to Ram bol raha tha aur ye (referring to the Congress) Ram ke naam se ghabratein hain" (When Mahatma Gandhi was shot, he uttered the words 'Hey Ram'. The Congress is scared of taking Ram's name).

(With inputs from Abhay Rajput)

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