ANI Photo | “No fear, victory assured”: Rajnandgaon BJP candidate exudes confidence, brushes aside Bhupesh Baghel challenge

BJP candidate from Rajnandgaon constituency Santosh Pandey exuded confidence in winning the Lok Sabha seat, a Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) bastion for over three decades, despite Congress fielding senior leader and former Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh Bhupesh Baghel on Monday.
He said there is no fear and the BJP will be victorious in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.
“There is no fear. I am the one who makes sharp attacks against him in the house and Parliament, who has raised questions on the Mahadev App, their government, Saumya and liquor, and I have raised questions on him from inside Sadan (the house) to Sadak (the roads). People in my constituency and state know it and I have been in charge of Bastar as well. Where the BJP was zero, we have won 8 seats out of 12 from there. So, there is no fear at all. There is no question about Bhupesh Baghel. Even if a BJP Yuva Morcha worker was contesting from here, the whole organisation is there to support him. The BJP will have the victory because the organisation is there,” he said.
Speaking with ANI, Pandey said, “It is my fortune, it is a big thing for me. Enthusiasm amongst people has increased and we will benefit from the work that Prime Minister Modi has done.”
Pandey, who defeated Congress’ Bholaram Sahu by a margin of 1,11, 966 votes in 2019 lauded PM Modi’s leadership in developing Rajnandgaon, a semi-urban constituency that shares borders with Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.
When asked about the issues that will be taking place amongst people, Pandey said, “The issues are of three types. The first is a national issue, followed by a state issue and a regional issue, but among all the three issues, the biggest is Modi himself. The magic or wave of Modi Ji is omnipresent. And let me say that from my area border of Maharashtra to the border of Madhya Pradesh, all the work that has been done is in the name of Modi ji. Be it a Kendriya Vidyalaya, a medical college that has been announced in Kawardha, or a railway line from Katghora to Dongargarh, the Prime Minister has given many gifts to my constituency. I am very lucky.”
Notably, BJP has never lost the Rajnandgaon Lok Sabha seat since the formation of Chhattisgarh in 2000, except for a parliamentary bypoll in 2007 when it was defeated by the Congress.
Pandey said that Rajnandgaon constituency belongs to the BJP and will remain so. “The reason is that the last time I contested in 2019, only one Rajnandgaon seat was in favour of the BJP. Today I have three. Kawardha, Pandaria. And if we calculate it, then we are also leading. So, with the thought process, they have come up with that they may win from here, the people of Rajnandgaonare are fed up and are waiting for April 26 to cast their vote. They took Setu Nigam Karyalaya from Rajnandgaon to Durg. They took ADB Karyalay to Durg and Indira Kala Sangit University, which is famous all over India, and they want it to shift to Raipur. So, do they not consider Rajnandgaon a constituency? For them, it’s just Durg. The partiality that they have done, people in my constituency will compensate for it. There is no doubt in the atmosphere that the BJP will win from here.”
This year in the Rajnandgaon constituency, Santosh Pandey (BJP), who won the previous election as well and Bhupesh Baghel (Congress), who served as the 3rd Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh, are contesting against each other.
The Rajnandgaon Lok Sabha constituency is scheduled to vote on April 26, 2024, with the Election Commission announcing results on June 4, as per their statement on March 16

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