Challenge of veteran Congress politician to the new face of BJP

Bhilwara: Bhilwara, also known as Vastranagari, has witnessed an interesting set of developments leading to the Lok Sabha campaigning as both the BJP and Congress parties changed their candidates from last time. To make a hat-trick of victories, BJP has fielded Damodar Agarwal, who is directly associated with the Sangh, by canceling the ticket of Bhilwara’s sitting MP Subhash Bahedia, while Congress has fielded former Assembly Speaker Dr CP Joshi. Congress had earlier fielded Damodar Gurjar from this seat, who was an unknown face to the people of Bhilwara. When the party changed the ticket and announced the name of Dr CP Joshi as the candidate, there was a wave of happiness in the Bhilwara Congress Party. BJP candidate Damodar Agarwal also has good dominance in the party and is currently the state general secretary of BJP, while Congress candidate Dr CP Joshi has previously been an MP from Bhilwara. The public was happy with the tenure of CP Joshi, who became the Union Minister at that time. At the same time, the public was not happy with the tenure of two-time MP Subhash Bahedia. In such a situation, BJP can get the full benefit of the change of candidate.

If we look at the current political equations of the seat after the declaration of the candidates, now it is considered to be a direct and close contest between the BJP and Congress candidates on this seat. Apart from the two major parties, there is no visible presence of any other party or independent candidate on this seat. Although BJP candidate Damodar Agarwal is a textile businessman, but being associated with BJP for a long time, he also has a lot of experience in local politics and has been continuously active in Bhilwara.

Whereas Congress candidate Dr CP Joshi is an experienced player in politics. Before being Speaker of the Assembly, he had been a Union Minister and a Cabinet Minister in the state. Talking about the caste equation, CP Joshi may benefit from Brahmin votes. Both the candidates are getting full support from the organization because owing to the tickets given by the party, the workers of both the parties are happy with their declared candidates. There does not seem to be any major resentment, yet Congress may suffer losses due to factionalism. There has been no election meeting of any big politician in the area yet, but in the nomination rally of CP Joshi, former Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot came and addressed a meeting, which may benefit the Congress candidate.

The Bhilwara Lok Sabha constituency includes 7 assembly seats of the Bhilwara district and one assembly seat of the Bundi district. Out of these eight assembly constituencies, six MLAs are from BJP, one from Congress and one is independent.

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