With the Indian Premier League kicking off on Tuesday,Sehwag on a poster is nothing surprising. But in Dakshinpuri Extension,a Sehwag poster is more likely to be of Anju than that of her brother Viru.
Till about a month ago,Anju (Sehwag) Mehrwan was an ordinary school teacher at Laxman Public School. She lived with her husband,Ravinder Singh Mehrwan,a property consultant,in a modest home in Madangiri.
Neighbours said the fact that she is Virender Sehwags sister was never highlighted as the cricketer wanted to keep his family away from media glare.
All that changed when the Congress party announced Anju as a contestant for the post of councillor from the ward.
Now,the fact that Anju is from the Sehwag family is displayed on all of the nearly 3,000 posters within a 3-km radius. She no longer shies from media scrutiny,and is out in the field everyday meeting the residents of the ward.
Local Congress leaders said her relationship with the Indian cricket star attaches credibility to her persona.
Anyone is eligible to stand for these elections and there is no reason why she should not. She is from the locality and her husband is also very well regarded. She will do a lot of work for the local population, said Akbar Ali,a Congress worker,who accompanies her on campaigns.
Her connection to Virender Sehwag is something we want to use as the name signifies someone who can be trusted. He has never been under any cloud of suspicion regarding any form of corruption. This is because of their upbringing,and Anju madam comes from the same family, he said.
A few residents of Dakshinpuri,however,are not too happy with Anju flaunting her Sehwag card.
Raghuram Sharma,who watched one of her padyatras,said,She had earned our respect by not boasting about her connections with Sehwag. Now,all that has changed. While I still see her as honest,her blatant change of surname for the election campaign smacks of political desperation. If she did want to contest,she should have done so under her real name,and on the strength of her policies.
Anju,meanwhile,is determined to prove her worth. Sanitation in the Dakshinpuri region is in a terrible state,and that will be my first priority. The development of roads is another. I want to help the community that has given me so much respect,and want the chance to prove my worth, she said.