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Monday, May 27, 2019

17th Lok Sabha ~ look at some of the successful candidates

The 2019 Indian general election was held in seven phases from 11 April to 19 May 2019 to constitute the 17th  Lok Sabha. In a mass electorate of about 900 million people – around 67% voted.  Bharatiya Janata Party won 303 seats, further increasing its substantial majority and the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance won 353 seats giving Narendra Modiji another chance.  Congress is not even the official opposition as it could win only 52 seats.

There were empty rhetorics – actor Prakash Raj was making so many criticism but could get less than 30000 votes describing it as a ‘ slap on the face’.  Away, stunned by the rout of his Rashtriya Janata Dal in Bihar and Jharkhand in the Lok Sabha election, Lalu Prasad gave up lunch after the declaration of poll results on May 23 for two days.

Before you proceed further, someone who knows politics will admit that the way elections happen, especially party tickets and candidature has changed forever in Tamil Nadu.  Way back in Dec 1984, in the 8th Legislative assembly elections for the Triplicane constituency, I worked for an independent who got close to 3000 votes.   A small team of us campaigned vigorously, drew the party symbol on roads / walls, made door-to-door campaign – life was simple those days – the candidate could meet people, talk to them – our campaign team of 15 odd people could criss-cross roads, even where the main political parties were making campaign – don’t think these are possible now ! ~ the candidates are powerful, wealthy and there is so much of money and muscle power unleashed by regional parties of Tamil Nadu.

Statistically that was the 8th  legislative assembly election for Tamil Nadu.  Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (ADMK) won the election and its leader, incumbent M. G. Ramachandran (MGR) was sworn in as Chief Minister, for the third time. In that general election M. Karunanidhi did not contest, perhaps the only time  since 1957 until his death.

This election has made us raise our heads looking at some of the young MPs and some achievers too.  From Bangalore South comes Tejasvi Surya, youngest member from BJP,  an active member of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and General Secretary of Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha. He won the elections by defeating B. K. Hariprasad of Congress by 3,31,192 votes.

In Andhra Pradesh, Araku valley, YSR Congress Party MP Goddeti Madhavi who has won the Araku Lok Sabha seat has the least declared assets worth Rs one lakh. The  youngest woman MP will be Chandrani Murmu, a 25-year-old Biju Janata Dal candidate who had won the Keonjhar seat in Odisha, whereas, the oldest is a 74-year-old Congress candidate Preneet Kaur from Patiala in Punjab.

Murmu, an engineering graduate, was just another girl seeking a job after obtaining her B.Tech degree. Chandrani Murmu, a tribal woman,  made history after winning the Lok Sabha seat from Keonjhar in Odisha. She has become the youngest Member of Parliament (MP) at the age of 25 years and 11 months.

There are names like -  Dushyant Chautala from Hisar Constituency in Haryana, the grandson of noted politician Om Prakash Chautala, was the youngest member of the 16th Lok Sabha. Chirag Paswan won the second consecutive time from Jamui seat in Bihar by nearly 5.3 lakh votes over his main rival Bhudeo Chaudhary of the Rashtriya Lok Samata Party.  Chirag Paswan is son of Member of Parliament and Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan. Chirag has a B Tech in Computer Science. He acted in the Bollywood movie Miley Naa Miley Hum in 2011; that  film failed at the box office,  ending his Bollywood career.

The Women's Reservation Bill may still be pending in Parliament, but 33% of the candidates from Odisha elected to the Lok Sabha are women, that too representing different sections of society.  Seven of total 21 MPs from Odisha are women. While five women have won the elections on Biju Janata Dal tickets, two belong to the BJP. They include a former IAS officer, a doctor, an engineer, a grassroots-level leader, a member of erstwhile royal family, and a homemaker.

The woman photo at the start, Aparajita Sarangi  has won from  Bhubaneshwar is a former IAS Officer.   A former Odisha cadre Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer of the 1994 batch, Sarangi quit her job and joined the BJP in 27th November, 2018 to contest the 2019 Indian general election. She was fielded against Biju Janata Dal's Arup Patnaik.  Sarangi was awarded  Shakti Samman in 2012. She had last served as the Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Rural Developmentand has also worked as Bhubaneswar Municipal Commissioner and secretary of the state’s mass education department. Her husband, Santosh Sarangi, is also an IAS officer of the same batch.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
27th May 2019.

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