210 candidates in fray for Haryana’s 10 Lok Sabha seats

April 22nd, 2009 - 8:05 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party Chandigarh, April 22 (IANS) A total of 210 candidates are in the fray for 10 Lok Sabha seats in Haryana. The state goes to polls in the fourth phase May 7.
In the state, which has one of the worst sex ratios in the country of around 800 females per 1,000 males, the number of women contestants is no consolation either. Among the 210 candidates left in the fray, only 14 are women.

State election commission Wednesday said there were 240 candidates in the fray when scrutiny of documents was conducted Monday at the close of filing of nominations. Thirty candidates withdrew their names Wednesday.

The Rohtak parliamentary seat, from where Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda’s son Deepinder Singh Hooda is seeking re-election, does not have a single woman candidate among the 16 in the fray.

Haryana has an electorate of 12 million (1.2 crore), including 5.48 million (54.8 lakh) women.

The Hissar Lok Sabha constituency as the highest number of candidates - 38.

Former chief minister Bhajan Lal of the Haryana Janhit Congress is contesting from Hissar against sitting Congress MP Jai Prakash and former state finance minister Sampat Singh of the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD).

Union Minister of State for Poverty Alleviation Selja has only six opponents to face for the Ambala (reserved) seat. She won from here in 2004 also.

The newly-created Gurgaon seat, adjoining Delhi, has 24 candidates in the fray.

The total number of contestants this time (210) is more than the number in 2004 general elections which saw only 160 candidates. The highest number of candidates ever in Haryana for the Lok Sabha polls was 324 in 1989.

In 2004 elections, the Congress won nine of the 10 Lok Sabha seats in the state while one seat (Sonipat) went to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

The INLD and the BJP, which contested the 2004 general elections and 2005 assembly polls separately, have formed an electoral alliance.

Other important candidates in the fray include billionaire-industrialist Naveen Jindal (Congress-Kurukshetra), Ajay Singh Chautala (INLD-Bhiwani/Mahendragarh) and union Minister of State for Defence Rao Inderjit Singh (Congress-Gurgaon).

The main contest for most seats is between the ruling Congress and the opposition INLD-BJP alliance.

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