Will Kanhaiya Trump?

April 29 2019

The Begusari seat has become one of the hottest seat of the Lok Sabha elections 2019. JNU-fame Kanhaiya Kumar has made the triangular contest here even more interesting. Earlier Giriraj Singh was seen a little off the charts, but now the BJP too has come to full force.
Many activists, scholars, Bollywood celebrities are backing Kanhaiya Kumar. It is said that Kanhaiya supporters have been able to raise over Rs 70 lakh via crowd funding. Even NRIs are making contributions to the crowd fund.
The party unit here is in itself a matter of concern for BJP’s firebrand Giriraj Singh. Although the daughter-in-law of former BJP MP from Begusarai, Late Bhola Singh, lost the Bachhwada assembly seat, but her influence is still there on the local Bhumihars. Begusarai seat is considered as a stronghold of the Bhumihar caste. There are more than 4.5 lakh Bhumihars in the region and both BJP candidate Giriraj Singh an CPI candidate Kanhaiya belong to this caste.
The RJD coalition has fielded Tanvi Hassan from her.
While the BJP is busy proving Kanhaiya a traitor, the Kanhaiya supporters have put forth a new caste-card. According to sources, they have brought to play Kanhaiya’s Gautam clan from the Bhumihar caste. Kanhaiyya is already supported by youths and Muslim voters to a large extent. If he is able to bifurcate the Bhumihar voter-bank, it will become a tougher challenge for Giriraj and Hassan.
The influence of caste politics in Bihar can be understood with an old incident. Back in 1991, when Lalu was the master of Bihar politics, he brought Inder Kumar Gujral here to contest from Patna. When Lalu’s own supporters begun asking what is the caste of Gujral, the witty politician explained that Gujral should be seen as Gurjar of Punjab, i.e. Yadav. The supporters were then convinced.

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