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Rediff.com  » Sports » Sporting politicians: Rathore triumphs; Azhar, Bhutia, Kaif trounced

Sporting politicians: Rathore triumphs; Azhar, Bhutia, Kaif trounced

Last updated on: May 17, 2014 09:58 IST

Sporting politicians: Rathore triumphs; Azhar, Bhutia, Kaif trounced

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Election results day wasn't exactly a happy one for sportspersons. Three former India captains – Mohammad Azharuddin, Bhaichung Bhutia and Dilip Tirkey -- suffered heavy defeats in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls even as 2004 Athens Olympics silver medallist Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore scored a thumping victory.

-Ready to take responsibility entrusted by 'captain' Modi, says Rathore

Celebrated double-trap shooter and BJP candidate Rathore humiliated high-profile Congressman and Union minister CP Joshi with a winning margin of 3.32 lakh (3,32,896 votes) from the Jaipur-Rural constituency.

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Image: Baichung Bhutia
Photographs: Sanjay Sawant/Rediff.com

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Sporting politicians: Rathore triumphs; Azhar, Bhutia, Kaif trounced

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Former India cricket captain Azharuddin, a sitting Congress MP contested from Tonk-Madhopur in Rajasthan but suffered a crushing defeat at the hands of BJP's Sukhbir Singh Jaunapuria by approx 1.35 lakh votes (1,35,311).

While Jaunapuria polled 5.48 lakh votes (5,48,179), the Hyderabadi batting stylist could manage only 4.12 lakh (4,12,868).

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Image: Mohammad Azharuddin


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Sporting politicians: Rathore triumphs; Azhar, Bhutia, Kaif trounced

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The most embarrassing defeat was that of former India football captain Bhaichung Bhutia. Trinamool Congress' star candidate from the controversy-hit Darjeeling constituency lost to BJP's SS Ahluwalia by a whopping 4.91 lakh votes (4,91,202).

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Image: Bhaichung Bhutia
Photographs: Reuters

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Sporting politicians: Rathore triumphs; Azhar, Bhutia, Kaif trounced

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The third high-profile candidate, Dilip Tirkey, a former India hockey captain and Biju Janata Dal (BJD) candidate from Sundergarh, lost by more than 70,000 (70,513) votes to his nearest rival, Juel Oram of the BJP.

However there was one lesser-known former India captain who did win his second Lok Sabha election in less than 18 months.

Former India and Mohun Bagan captain Prasun Banerjee retained his seat at Howrah constituency, defeating CPI(M)'s Sridip Bhattacharya by a convincing 1.96 lakh (1,96,956) votes.

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Image: Dilip Tirkey


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Sporting politicians: Rathore triumphs; Azhar, Bhutia, Kaif trounced

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Another seasoned politician and current Lok Sabha MP Kirti Azad won from Darbhanga, beating RJD's Mohammed Ali Ashraf Fatmi by 1.67 lakh (1,67, 160) votes.

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Image: Kirti Azad


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Former India cricketer and Congress candidate Mohammed Kaif was also one of the worst performers from the prestigious Phulpur constituency in UP where he placed a distant fourth, polling less than a lakh votes (58,127). The seat was won by Keshav Prasad Maurya of BJP, who polled 5,03,564 votes.

Among the lesser-known sportspersons and better-known politician, Naveen Jindal of Congress lost to Rak Kumar Saini by 1.30 lakh votes in Kurukshetra. Jindal, however, placed third, behind Balbir Saini of INLD.


Image: Mohammed Kaif


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