CHHATTISGARH TIMES:RAIPUR. The heading is very apt for a multi linguistic and multi caste state that Chhattisgarh is. Though “Unity in Diversity ” has been the driving spirit of this rapidly progressive young state but demographically the concept is quite different.
Today all round development may be one of the deciding factors in any election but community based mass voting has the ultimate say in the final outcome. All political parties are trying to woo voters from the primary dominant and prevalent communities of the state,among which Kurmi and Sahu comprise nearly 36% of the total electorate.
Talking of Mahasamund, a not so large constituency,made headlines back in 2013 as BJP dissident and staunch RSS supporter Vimal Chopra winning on an independent ticket. He defeated his nearest Congress rival Agni Chandrakar by 4722 votes. BJP’s Poonam Chandrakar being a distant third. Kurmi votes divided saw Vimal take centre stage. BJP again playing the Kurmi card in 2018 in Mahasamund, though not in Patan where Vijay Baghel was denied a ticket has tried to appease this community.
2018 assembly elections is a changed scenario but, Janta Congress Chhattisgarh (JCC) also being an able contender, a quadrangular poll show may well be in the offing.
Congress going for Vinod Chandrakar, BJP’s Poonam Chandrakar,Vimal Chopra and sources close to Jogi camp says that either Tribhuvan Mahilang or Ramesh Sahu may be their candidate.
Political analysts say Poonam has the edge over all three as he has competently headed the Kisan Morcha of the party and his solid connectivity with grass root workers,cadres and farmers alike are his ace factors. Moreover being a Kurmi will have it’s added advantage. His youth icon symbolism puts him a step ahead of others. Vimal’s anti incumbency,Political theatrics and volatile temperament are his basic drawbacks. Vinod Chandrakar’s not so seasoned political background with former party MLA Agni Chandrakar already in a disgruntled mood over not getting a ticket may act against him thereby playing spoilsport to his aspirations, these vital aspects combined together may just be the power packed punch that can help Poonam win.JCC’s Tribhuvan being from the scheduled caste community if likely gets the ticket can unsettle things a bit but under the present circumstances it can well be said that Poonam Chandrakar can pull off the show.

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