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Chhattisgarh: Congress eyes Savitri Mandavi to cash in on sympathy votes | Raipur News No ratings yet.

RAIPUR: The ruling Congress in Chhattisgarh is likely to field Savitri Mandavi, wife of former deputy speaker late Manoj Mandavi, for the by-election to Bhanupratappur (ST) assembly seat. The seat got vacant following the death of Manoj Mandavi and bypoll will be held on December 5 and Savitri's presence in the field will help the party cash in on sympathy votes.
Speculations about her candidature were sparked off in political circles as soon as Savitri Mandavi, a teacher in a government school, resigned. However, the party is yet to make a formal announcement of its candidate.
Cong eyes Savitri Mandavi to cash in on sympathy votes

The announcement for Bhanupratappur bypoll was made within a month of the Mandavi's death following a heart attack on October 16.
Meanwhile, political circles are agog with rumours that the opposition BJP might field a new face in the by-election, which the party considers crucial before the general elections to the state assembly scheduled for next year. BJP sources said the party leaders would meet soon to discuss names of their potential candidate. Similarly, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) buoyed by their success in Punjab and marking presence in Madhya Pradesh panchayat polls is eyeing to test the electoral battle in the state which has traditionally remained divided between the Congress and the BJP.
A mit Jogi’s regional party, the Janata Congress Chhattisgarh (Jogi) is also likely to field its candidate for the by-elections too. In the assembly elections 2018 elections, Manoj Mandavi (Congress) had won the seat by a margin of 26,693 votes over his nearest BJP rival Devalala Dugga. AAP state president Komal Hupendi had finished third with 9,634 votes while regional party Janata Congress candidate Manak Darpatti secured fourth position with 9,611 votes. This bypoll is crucial mainly for the ruling Congress government as the outcome of this bypoll in the tribal Bastar-belt could be seen as a referendum of Congress governments performance, policies and programmes ahead of the 2023 assembly polls. A win would boost the morale of the Congress cadre for the general elections.
Congress’ march can be grounded only due to anti-incumbency and the strong resentment among the tribal communities, mainly in Bastar region over the reservation issue. The Chhattisgarh HC had capped the total reservations to 50% citing a SC order and struck down a 2012 order for providing reservation to 58%. This reduced the ST reservation from 32% to 20%. The Sarva Adivasi Samaj leaders, who are leading the protests asking state government to restore the 32% quota, are likely to meet next week to discuss their strategy for the assembly bypoll.

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