NDA bets on most backward caste candidate to beat RJD in Bihar polls


Brahampur (Buxar): The ruling National Democratic Alliance in Bihar is experimenting with a new caste equation in the Brahampur assembly constituency. In an effort to wrest it from Rashtriya Janata Dal, NDA has allotted the seat to Vikashsheel Insan Party whose candidate belongs to the most backward caste (MBC) category.

Brahampur is significant for BJP as Kailash Pati Mishra, who helped Jan Sangh gain a foothold in Bihar, was born here. Though BJP has managed to win this seat only twice – in 1990 and 2010 – it is keen to defeat RJD’s sitting MLA Shambhu Yadav this time. While NDA has fielded VIP’s Jairaj Choudhari in Brahampur this time, local leaders said BJP is managing the entire campaign. “BJP has been managing the day-to-day activities such as route management of the VIP candidate Jairaj ji,” BJP’s in-charge (vidhan sabha prabhari) of Brahampur constituency Manoj Sharma told ET.

BJP’s ‘mandal prabhari’ Vinod Kumar Tewari said the party has “strong organisational roots” in Brahampur and that its grassroots-level workers are running Choudhari’s campaign. The presence of a candidate of NDA ally Lok Janshakti Party – which is fighting Bihar elections on its own – is a challenge for the ruling alliance.

A bigger challenge, though, could be to keep its upper caste support base intact. “The biggest challenge for the BJP is to ensure the transfer of the upper castes’ votes to the VIP candidate in this region,” a local resident, Manoj Prajapati said.

What suits the political interest of RJD’s Shambu Yadav is considerable population of Muslim and Yadavs here. “While my equation remains intact, RJD candidate Shambhu Yadav is getting support from other castes also,” Santosh Yadav, general secretary of RJD’s Buxar unit said.

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