New Delhi, March 27: Political ambitions seem to have torn families apart in the coming Lok Sabha elections with siblings, in-laws, uncles and aunts all in the fray against one another. Interestingly, a majority of those contesting are from well-known political families. A look at some contests among family members in the offing:
Sasaram (Bihar): Congress nominee and Speaker Meira Kumar will face her niece Medhavi Kirti in the family pocket borough of Sasaram in Bihar. Medhavi Kirti, who will fight on the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) ticket is the daughter of late Suresh Ram, the brother of Meira Kumar. The BSP believes the influence it has in this constituency, which adjoins Uttar Pradesh, will be enough to spoil the chances of the Lok Sabha speaker. Medhavi Kirti, who joined politics soon after post-graduating from New Delhi’s Jawaharlal Nehru University, was a minister in the Devi Lal government in Haryana. Relations have not been cordial between Medhavi and her aunt for many years now, reportedly after a dispute over land at Palwal in Faridabad. Poll: April 10.
Saran (Bihar): Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad’s brother-in-law Anirudh Prasad alias Sadhu Yadav would contest the Lok Sabha election as an independent against his sister Rabri Devi. The former Bihar chief minister is already facing stiff challenge from senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Rajiv Pratap Rudy on the seat. Sadhu Yadav, the controversial brother-in-law of Lalu Prasad, called the shots during RJD rule in the state for 15 years from 1990 to 2005. Poll: May 7.
Dausa (Rajasthan): The Congress has fielded Minister of State for Finance Namo Narain Meena from Dausa in Rajasthan, pitting him directly against his brother Harish Meena who is fighting on the BJP ticket. Namo Narain Meena currently represents the Sawai Madhopur seat, the seat which has now been given to former cricketer Mohammad Azharuddin. Poll: April 24.
Raigunj (West Bengal): Sitting Congress MP Deepa Dasmunshi is contesting against brother-in-law Satyaranjan Dasmunshi of Trinamool Congress. Deepa is married to former information and broadcasting minister Priyaranjan Dasmunshi, who has been lying in coma at a Delhi hospital for the last few years. Satyaranjan is his brother. The duo of sister-in-law and brother-in-law are running their campaigns from different floors of the same family house in Raiganj. Poll: April 24.
Ambala (Punjab): Kapoor Singh of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) is pitted against brother-in-law S.P. Singh of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). S.P. Singh’s sister is married to Kapoor. Both had taken premature retirement last year to take the political plunge. Close aides of S.P. Singh said there was family pressure to withdraw the candidature. Poll: April 30.
Alipurduar (West Bengal): Trinamool Congress’ Dasrath Tirkey and Left Front’s sitting MP Manohar Tirkey are married into the same family but will now be fighting against each other for the Alipurduar seat in Jalpaiguri district. Dasrath was elected thrice as an MLA on a ticket by Left Front constituent Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP), but later switched to the Trinamool. Poll: April 17.