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Sachin Pilot looks to sail through; BJP counts on groundswell in Raj
The fight for the Ajmer Lok Sabha seat has taken on an interesting prospect after the ruling BJP in Rajasthan decided to field a state minister and local Jat leader to challenge Union Minister and sitting MP, Congress’ Sachin Pilot.
Pilot is counting on development work and projects started under his initiative over the last five years to see him through, but Rajasthan Water Resources minister Sanwarlal Jat is confident of success as all the eight Assembly segments in the Ajmer Parliamentary constituency are now in BJP’s kitty.
But Pilot is unfazed despite Congress’s comprehensive defeat at the hands of BJP in the recent Assembly elections in the state. “I am ready to take on and will defeat the BJP candidate this time also. In the last elections, I defeated sitting MP Kiran Maheshwari by a margin of 76,000 votes… This time, I am confident of a better performance,” Pilot told PTI.
“The work I’ve done here and the connections I have with the locals will help me win the seat again. “BJP delayed naming its candidate for the seat as it could not find a suitable leader. It later fielded the minister (Jat), but I am positive about the results,” he said.
A Gujjar leader, Pilot was handed the reins of the party in the state by Congress Vice-President Rahul Gandhi after its unprecedented debacle in the 2013 Assembly polls. And, in keeping with his new role, Pilot said he would not only focus on his constituency but also visit other seats during campaigning in the state.
“Being the PCC Chief, I have to look after all the seats. I am in constant touch with all candidates. I will be going to other constituencies during campaigning but this would not affect my own constituency,” he averred.
He asserted that projects like Kishangarh airport, Central University, Ajmer-Pushkar rail connectivity and the linking of Ajmer with other destinations in the country were among some of the works which would pave the way for his return to Parliament.
The foundation stone for the Kishangarh airport was laid last year by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh while the Central University is already operational.