Transgender candidate confident of winning in MP bypolls

Morena: Neha (29), a transgender person contesting an Assembly byelecion in Madhya Pradesh’s Morena district, kicked off her campaigning on Friday.

Byelections to 28 Assembly seats in the state will be held on November 3.

Neha, popularly known as Neha Kinnar, is standing for election as an independent from Ambah, a seat reserved for scheduled castes. She belongs to the local Bedia community.

Before embarking on electioneering, she offered prayers at the famous Nagaji Temple at Porsa.

She would win the election, Neha said, adding that her poll plank was social justice.

“I mean everybody should get justice. I want to empower the weak and ensure that they also reap the benefits of welfare schemes meant for them,” she told PTI.

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“The weak and the poor are exploited in the entire Morena district. I want to end this in Ambah after winning,” she added.

“Last time I gave Congress candidate Kamlesh Jatav a run for his money. I lost to him by a slender margin,” Neha said.

She had lost to Jatav by7,547 votes in 2018.

“This time around, I am going to win,” she said.

Madhya Pradesh saw emergence of members of the transgender community in politics with Shabnam Mausi getting elected to the Assembly in 1998 from ShahdolAnuppur.

Kamla Jaan became the Mayor of Katni in 2000, while Hira Bai, another member of the community, was elected as a corporator.

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The byelections were necessitated by the resignations of 22 Congress MLAs from Jyotiraditya Scindia’s camp who crossed over to the BJP and brought down the Kamal Nath government in the state in March. Three more MLAs resigned later.

Three seats fell vacant due to the death of sitting MLAs.

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