Raj polls: Gurjars of Alwar divided on supporting Congress in aftermath of Pilot-Gehlot feud
Alwar, Nov 23 (PTI) The Gurjars of Alwar are a divided house on the issue of community leader Sachin Pilot not getting the chief minister's post in Congress-ruled Rajasthan.
The community here wants to see Pilot as the next chief minister after the 2018 'betrayal' by the Congress which picked Ashok Gehlot over him. While some people want to switch loyalties to the BJP over this, others say only the Congress can make Pilot the CM.
In Alwar district, there are about 1.5 lakh people who belong to the Gurjar community amongst the estimated 40 lakh people's population.
A total of 35 Assembly constituencies out of the 200 in the state are considered to be Gurjar-dominated.
Rajasthan goes to polls on November 25 and the results will be declared on December 3.
Speaking to PTI, local resident Amar Singh Gurjar said while the community is upset about Pilot not getting the chief minister's seat, it will not have an impact on their decision to vote for the Congress.
“We understand that if Pilot has to be the CM, only Congress can make that happen and not the BJP,” Gurjar told PTI.
He said the people of the Gurjar community voted for Congress only because “they thought Sachin Pilot would be the Chief Minister of Rajasthan.” 'If the Congress gets the majority this time, we would want Pilot to be the CM,” he said.
He said the Gurjar community in Alwar will cast their votes based on the developmental work done by the Congress.
“He (Sachin Pilot) is the face of the youth; he is the leader of this new generation. The Gurjar community is not upset. the media reports are all fake. We also look at the development and work done by leaders and we will cast our votes based on that,” he claimed.
Recently, BJP MP Kirodi Lal Meena claimed that the Gurjar community in Rajasthan has made a “ghar wapsi' (homecoming) to the BJP as its “big leader” Pilot was betrayed by the Congress and not made the chief minister.
Another Alwar resident and a Gurjar, Sanjay Chavdi, said despite being promised, Pilot was not made the CM which was a “betrayal”. Therefore, a considerable number of votes will go to the BJP.
“Five years ago, the Gurjar community was assured that Sachin Pilot would be made the CM and the whole community came together to cast vote for the Congress,' Chavdi told PTI.
'It was Pilot who revived the party in Rajasthan but despite that, he wasn't given the CM's seat. It was nothing but betrayal. I feel this factor will go against the Congress and a lot of votes from our community will go to the BJP,” he said.
Nihal Singh Gurjar said the Pilot issue is an emotional one for the community, but the people will vote for the candidate who will work for them.
“Gurjar community sees Sachin Pilot as their leader and no one else. However, we will cast our votes on the basis of who has the capacity to work for us here,' he said.
'If we face any local problem, Sachin Pilot won't come to resolve it, the local leader will,' he added. Alwar (rural) BJP candidate Jairam Jatav has claimed that 95 per cent of the Gurjars will vote for the BJP as they are feeling 'betrayed' by the ruling party while Congress candidate Tikaram Jully exuded confidence in getting the community's support, saying “only the Congress has the capacity to make Pilot the CM.” “The Congress sought votes from the Gurjars in the last elections assuring that Pilot will get the CM's seat, hence they are upset. They are also upset about the rift between Pilot and Gehlot,' Jatav said.
'We believe only 5 to 10 per cent of votes might go to the Congress this time, the rest of the votes will come to the BJP. There are 30 to 35 seats with a Gurjar-dominated population and all of them will go to BJP this time,” he added.
Refuting the claims, Jully said the Gurjars are not upset with the Congress and understand that Pilot and Gehlot are fighting the elections together.
'It is not true that the people of the Gurjar community are upset with the Congress. They know Sachin Pilot and Ashok Gehlot will stick to the Congress and that both of them are fighting the elections together,' Jully said.
'Every community has their own sentiments and if the Gurjar community wants Sachin to be the CM, only the Congress can make that happen. They won't vote for the BJP if they expect him to be the CM,” Jully claimed.
The Congress candidate alleged that the BJP was “against the Gurjar community”.
“The BJP is completely against the Gurjars, they have tortured people of that community. Some people are trying to create a rift between Pilot and Gehlot and the BJP wants to make this an election issue. I want to ask the BJP, will they make Pilot the CM of the state?” Jully said. PTI ABU RHL
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