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Rediff.com  » News » AAP's Jaipur candidate is winning hearts. But will he win the votes?

AAP's Jaipur candidate is winning hearts. But will he win the votes?

April 12, 2014 13:12 IST

AAP's Jaipur candidate is winning hearts. But will he win the votes?

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Shahnawaz Akhtar in Jaipur

Aam Aadmi’s Party’s Dr Virendra Singh -- a popular doctor-turned Lok Sabha election candidate -- is already making a difference with his folded hands and beaming smiles in Jaipur. Shanawaz Akhtar reports.

If simplicity can fetch votes, then Aam Aadmi Party’s Jaipur City candidate Dr Virendra Singh will surely make a difference in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.

Pitted against the candidates of two national parties -- Congress’ sitting MP Mahesh Joshi and BJP’s Ramcharan Bohra, political novice Dr Singh, the former superintendent of the state-run Sawai Man Singh hospital, has already made his presence felt within a month-long campaign. 

“I have been doing door-to-door campaign and road-shows ever since the party allotted me the symbol. People are welcoming us wholeheartedly, it’s really great,” the 59-year-old, who was also the head of the hospital’s allergy and pulmonary medicine department, says while conducting a road-show on Friday.

The AAP is yet to conduct any major rally in Jaipur so far and has opted for door-to-door canvassing and road-shows.

With folded hands and a smile on his face, Dr Joshi tries to greet every person on the road.

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Image: AAP's Jaipur City candidate Dr Virendra Singh appeals to BJP workers to calm down, on Friday
Photographs: Chandra Mohan Aloria/Rediff.com

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On Friday, when the AAP road-show reached Choti Chaupar area -- one of the busiest areas in the Walled City -- BJP candidate Ramcharan Bohra’s road-show was also crossing from the same area.

There was a time when both the party cadres started shouting out their slogans as loudly as they could and in minutes the situation turned tense. 

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Image: AAP and BJP workers nearly came to blows as their rallies crossed paths in Jaipur on Friday
Photographs: Chandra Mohan Aloria/Rediff.com

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Realising that, Dr Singh promptly got down from his open jeep and appealed, with folded hands, to his party workers and also those of the BJP, to calm down. A few minutes later he also met Bohra, still on his jeep.

Thereafter, the police interfered and managed to keep both the party members away.

“The BJP workers forcefully interrupted the peaceful rally showing their party flags and used abusive language against the AAP supporters. When requested to let the rally pass-on peacefully, they even resorted to physical fight with the party volunteers,” alleged Mulkraj Singh, an AAP office-bearer.

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Image: Dr Virendra Singh greets BJP candidate Ramcharan Bohra in Jaipur on Friday
Photographs: Chandra Mohan Aloria/Rediff.com

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“Dr Singh is a simple, honest man, and remains calm most of the times,” commented Savitri, a former patient of his who was passing by the same area on a cycle rickshaw and was greeted by the doctor-turned-politician.

Dr Singh, under whose tenure the number of patients visiting SMS hospital in Jaipur was at par with All India Institute of Medical Science, Delhi, also informed that nowadays he is busy campaigning from 7 in the morning to 10 in the night.

Interestingly, although there are 16 candidates in the fray for the seat of the state capital, the AAP candidate has shown maximum poll expenditure in the first phase, although its campaigning is limited to door-to-door canvassing and road shows.

“Whether we win or lose, we are here to promote transparent politics. We could not hide figures to misguide concerning agencies. And because I’m contesting from a new party, I am also facing financial crunch,” he Dr Singh admits.

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Image: Dr Singh greets Savitri, a former patient, in Jaipur on Friday
Photographs: Chandra Mohan Aloria/Rediff.com

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AAP's Jaipur candidate is winning hearts. But will he win the votes?

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While AAP cadres campaign for their candidates at busy areas of the Pink City, some passersby seek hand bills mentioning the party candidate’s profile. Some, like Jaipur resident Anwar Ali, also demand party caps.

“I like this party and its candidates. We had voted for the Congress MP last time around, but in five years, we did not see him visiting us again. After winning, he got involved in making money and forgot us,” Ali, who stays in Char Darwaza, reacts. 

He also says that he is convincing other Muslim voters to vote for the AAP.

“Whether such a candidate wins or loses, we should vote for him as he would not indulge in corruption,” he adds.

 


Image: Dr Singh campaigns in Jaipur on Friday
Photographs: Chandra Mohan Aloria/Rediff.com

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