Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and MP Congress chief Kamal Nath exuded confidence of wins by huge margin as bypolls to the Khandwa parliamentary constituency and three assembly seats in Madhya Pradesh, touted to be semifinals before the 2023 assembly polls, were announced on Tuesday.
The polling will be held on October 30 and results will be announced on November 2.
The assembly constituencies going to the polls are Jobat in Alirajpur, Prithvipur in Niwari and Raigaon in Satna. The Khandwa Lok Sabha and Raigaon seats were held by BJP while the Jobat and Prithvipur seats were with the Congress. Both the parties will try to wrest all the seats to show their political hold in the state in the run up to the 2023 assembly polls.
CM Chouhan said that the BJP was totally prepared for the bypolls and based on the welfare work undertaken by Narendra Modi-led government at the Centre and the state government, the party will win all the bypolls with huge margin. State BJP president Vishnu Dutt Sharma said that BJP workers were always in preparatory mode and the strength of organisation, along with the welfare works of government, will ensure a historic win for the party.
Kamal Nath tweeted to welcome the announcement of bypolls date and said that Congress was fully prepared for it and will announce its candidates at the right time. “We have total faith in the people and we will win these four bypolls with huge margins like in Damoh. At least the announcement of the poll dates will put a stop to the fake announcements and fake foundation stone laying worth crores in the bypolls bound areas,” Nath said.
While the BJP has already launched its hectic electioneering by organising mass events with CM Chouhan in the lead, the Congress will be seeking to replicate its Damoh strategy of ground-level mass contact. Congress’s substantial win in the Damoh bypolls in May this year had caused a worry for the BJP that had managed to win 19 out of 28 assembly seats up for bypolls just six months ago.
The BJP has thus kept its election mode up in the four bypolls constituencies right since June after the COVID-19 pandemic subsided. Apart from public meeting and recent ‘jandarshan’ programmes of Chouhan where he has made several announcements of local development, BJP state in-charge P. Murlidhar Rao, Sharma, ministers and office bearers made in-charge of the bypolls have been visiting the areas regularly.
The BJP will be harping on the welfare policies of the Union and state governments during its campaigns. The CM reached the BJP office to participate in a scheduled castes panel meet immediately after the bypolls schedule was announced. Later in the evening, he is expected to hold a meeting of ministers, especially those made in-charge of the bypolls.
The Congress has held state-level meetings and is planning to hold training for its booth, sector and block-level office bearers from October 1. The Congress strategy is to make people aware of the failures of the BJP-led Union and state governments, vis-à-vis COVID-19 mismanagement, unemployment, price rise and farmers’ issues.