The joint opposition candidate for the ongoing Kairana Lok Sabha bye-election today got a shot in the arm, when the Lok Dal candidate joined the RLD, whose candidate is pitted against the ruling BJP in a straight fight.
Rashtriya Lok Dal which has fielded Tabassum Hasan as the joint opposition nominee to take on BJP’s Mriganka Singh in the Kairana Lok Sabha bypoll got the boost, when Lok Dal candidate Kanwar Hasan embraced the party and pulled out of the electoral race.
Confirming the development, UP RLD chief Masood Ahmad told PTI, “Lok Dal candidate Kanwar Hasan today joined the Rashtriya Lok Dal at a meeting held in Kairana in the presence of Jayant Chaudhary, the national vice-president of RLD.”
Ahmad exuded confidence that the joint opposition candidate Tabassum Hasan will sweep the bypoll.
“Now, there is no contest left in the bye-election. We are going to win by a huge margin which will be in the range of 3-4 lakh votes,” Ahmad said.
Reacting to the day’s development, Lok Dal chief Sunil Singh told PTI, “Kanwar Hasan was fielded by Lok Dal, but today he joined the RLD. We were giving a third alternative to the voters, which is non-BJP and non-Congress. He has betrayed the party. Now it is very difficult for us. All we can say to the people is to wait till 2019 Lok Sabha elections and vote for us.”
He alleged that money power was being blatantly used in the Kairana bypoll. We have complained to the Election Commission, he added.
Senior RLD leaders heaved a sigh of relief and said the possibility of a split in Muslim votes was no longer there now.
“The process of forming a coalition (against the BJP) has started and soon, a grand alliance will be formed, the UP RLD chief said.
Kanwar Hasan who was fielded by Lok Dal as its candidate from Kairana is the brother-in-law of Tabassum Hasan.
The Kairana bypoll was necessitated by the death of sitting MP Hukum Singh in February. Voting for Kairana Lok Sabha will be held on May 28.
Kairana parliamentary constituency comprises five assembly segments — Shamli, Thanabhawan, Kairana (all in Shamli district) and Gangoh and Nakur (Saharanpur district).
In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, BJPs Hukum Singh had bagged 5,65,909 votes as he defeated Nahid Hasan of the SP who got 3,29,081 votes.