LS Polls 2024: Hatemongering Candidates of BJP Seen as Biting the Dust

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 Navneet Rana, Madhvi Latha, and Sanjeev Balyan trail behind; BJP loses in Faizabad

 Team Clarion

NEW DELHI – Several candidates, known for hatemongering and their ranting against Muslims, are likely to bite the dust, trends in the general elections indicated on Tuesday. Even though trends continue to oscillate, defeat stares in the face of Hindu supremacists like Navneet Rana, Madhvi Latha, and Sanjeev Balyan and several others.

Navneet Rana, the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) candidate from Maharashtra’s Amravati constituency, was trailing behind Balwant Wankhade of the Congress by around 20,000 votes by Tuesday evening. Rana garnered 3.30 lakh votes while Wankhade got 3.50 lakh votes. Rana had won the same seat in 2019 as an independent candidate.

In the current elections, she often faced criticism for her provocative remarks and hate speeches targeting the Muslim community. In her election speeches, she had openly said all those wanting to stay in India will have to say ‘Jai Shri Ram’.

During the election campaign in Hyderabad, Rana had said that she would ask the police to keep away for 15 seconds (to teach Muslims a lesson) reminding AIMIM legislator Akbaruddin Owaisi’s speech.

“The younger brother says ‘remove the police for 15 minutes so that we can show them what we can do’. I want to tell the younger brother (Akbaruddin) that it might take you 15 minutes, but it will only take us 15 seconds…it will take us all of 15 seconds if we come to the forefront,” she said.

Similarly, Madhvi Latha, the BJP candidate who was seen pointing an arrow at a mosque in Hyderabad during the election campaign, is trailing behind AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi by over three lakh votes. Owaisi got over 6.5 lakh votes while Latha secured over 3.1 lakh votes.

Latha was booked for her controversial action of targeting the mosque. Later, on the polling day, she had intimidated burqa-wearing voters. She was booked in this case too.

Interestingly, Rana had campaigned for Latha and performed the same action of shooting the arrow towards the mosque. Both the candidates are trailing.

BJP candidate Sanjeev Balyan, who was accused of playing a role in the Muzaffarnagar riots in 2013, is also trailing by a small margin against Samajwadi Party’s candidate Harendra Malik.

Balyan – whose political career was launched following the communal polarisation triggered by the 2013 riots – was booked for inciting communal violence. A Lok Sabha MP from Muzaffarnagar, he holds the portfolio of minister of state for fisheries, animal husbandry and dairying portfolio in the Narendra Modi government.

In Ayodhya where the Ram temple was built, the BJP failed to win in its Faizabad constituency. Samajwadi Party’s Awedhes Prasad registered a win over BJP’s Lallu Singh here.

If the ongoing trends get converted into the final results, this will be the first time since 2014 that the BJP failed to cross the majority mark on its own as previously it won 283 seats in 2014 and 303 in 2019. The party has won or is leading in leading in just 241 seats at the time of posting this report.

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