Hooda strengthens his position after Haryana civic body polls

New Delhi, Dec 31 : Former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda has strengthened his position in the Congress after the civic body elections and the recent Baroda Assembly bypoll win.

Both the wins are from the Sonepat region of the state, which is Hooda’s stronghold.

The wins have reinforced his claim of being the super challenger to the BJP and Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar in particular in the state. It also establishes his power within the Congress as the sole leader who has been able to not only retain his backyard but is also trying to give a hard time to the BJP in other areas.

Sources say the BJP’s win in only one civic body indicated that support for the party in urban areas is ebbing. But, the Congress as a party is also not in a position to unsettle the government till the JJP remains with the BJP.

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Haryana’s ruling BJP-JJP combine lost the mayoral polls in two municipal corporations but won in one civic body on Wednesday. The opposition Congress won the post of Mayor in the Sonepat Municipal Corporation, while the BJP won the post in Panchkula Municipal Corporation.

In the Ambala Municipal Corporation, victory belonged to the Haryana Jan Chetna Party of Vinod Sharma, who had left the Congress party in 2013 and formed his own party. Shakti Rani Sharma of the Haryana Jan Chetna Party defeated the BJP’s Vandana Sharma in the election by a margin of over 7,000 votes.

BJP’s Kulbhushan Goyal won the Panchkula mayoral election by defeating Congress’ Upinder Kaur Ahluwalia by a margin of 2,057 votes. Goyal got 49,860 votes, while Ahluwalia polled 47,803 votes. Congress’ Nikhil Madaan defeated BJP’s candidate Lalit Batra by a margin of 13,818 votes in Sonepat for the Mayor’s seat.

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The farmers’ agitation in Haryana is having an impact on the BJP’s electoral fortunes. The Congress, even though gaining, has much to owe to the Hooda influence in his stronghold.

Disclaimer: This story is auto-generated from IANS service.

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