Congress on Monday fielded Dhansukh Rajput, three-time municipal councillor of Surat and a migrant, to take on BJP’s Jankhana, daughter of the late MLA Raja Patel, from Choryasi Assembly seat in Surat in the bypoll to be held on January 21. Rajput filed his nomination at Surat district collector office on Monday. Till the last day of filing nominations Monday, 34 persons have filed their papers.
While Jankhana is a Koli Patel, Rajput is into real estate business and hails from Uttar Pradesh. The total number of voters in this migrant-dominated seat is 3.91 lakh. Out of this, 1.63 lakh are male voters and the rest are women. The migrant voters hail from Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Odisha, and others. This seat has sizable number of Koli Patels, Kanbi Patels, fishermen, Brahmins, Rajputs, SCs/STs from the state.
BJP candidate Jankhana Patel had filed her nomination form on Saturday afternoon. According to her affidavit, she is having assets worth over Rs 6 crore, while Rajput is having assets worth over Rs 11 crore.
Rajput had earlier contested the Lok Sabha elections from Navsari seat on Congress ticket losing to BJP’s C R Patil in 2009 by a narrow margin. Again, the Congress gave him Udhna assembly seat in 2012, but he was defeated by BJP veteran Narottam Patel by 32,000 votes.
Talking to The Indian Express Dhansukh Rajput said, “There are over 10 lakh migrant populations from North eastern state in South Gujarat and there is no representative for them in the state assembly. The Congress party has given me a chance to contest from Choryasi seat. This time the wave is against BJP and we will definitely come out as winner. Some of the areas in Choryasi seat also fall in the municipal corporation wards and our party candidates had performed well on this seat. We are hoping for the best and victory of Congress party.”