EVEN BEFORE the announcement for the Assembly bypoll in Baroda of Sonipat district, there seems some political heat over the issue. Rajya Sabha MP Deepender Singh Hooda on Tuesday alleged that at a time when people of the state are in ‘SOS’ mode because of the coronavirus pandemic, the ruling BJP appears to be in poll mode.
The demise of Congress’s sitting MLA Sri Krishan Hooda in April has necessitated the bypoll. In October 2019, Sri Krishan had defeated BJP candidate and celebrity wrestler Yogeshwar Dutt by a margin of 4,840 votes.
Addressing a press conference Tuesday, Deepender said coronavirus cases in Haryana are increasing with cases doubling in 8 days. “Far from reacting with the seriousness, the state government is engaged in political propaganda without worrying about the rising Covid numbers.” Accompanied by several Congress legislators, Hooda further said, “The BJP is more worried about the Baroda by-election than the health and lives of the people. Its MPs and ministers are sometimes holding political meetings in Baroda and sometimes Gohana even as MHA guidelines clearly state that all social, religious and political events are still banned.”
Deepender questioned how the government suddenly remembered Baroda and why no minister or the chief minister visited Baroda in the past six years? “Was Baroda not a part of Haryana earlier? This government was not worried about Baroda earlier? Even today, they are not bothered about people’s health and are only concerned about the politics. The people of Baroda understand this well and will give them a befitting response,” he remarked, and claimed that “the by-election will start the countdown of this government”.
“Not only Baroda, the people of the entire state believe that the list of failures of this government is much greater than its successes. A mass movement could be started against the government but I would not take any step in this phase which would put people’s lives at risk. The government should be sensitive to the situation,” he said.
The Rajya Sabha MP noted with concern that the situation in adjoining Delhi is “getting worse” and all the borders of Haryana have been opened. “When there were a dozen cases in the state, all the borders were sealed. Now that the figure is touching 8,000, then the movement of people and vehicles has been normalised. The state government should formulate a policy to ensure that cases from other states do not enter Haryana.”
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