Ticket seekers throng party offices

October 22nd, 2008 - 2:29 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata PartyNew Delhi, Oct 22 (IANS) Pink and red turbans, mostly worn by those hailing from Rajasthan, add a dash of colour to the otherwise all-white spectacle of hundreds of starched kurta-pyjama clad nomination-seekers thronging various political party offices in the capital these days. In a pink turban, Sajjan Bansal ambled idly in front of the Congress headquarters.

“I come here everyday, but I am not the only one. There are at least 500 more like me from my state, Rajasthan itself roaming around this place everyday hoping to get a ticket to fight elections,” Bansal told IANS.

Bansal said meeting the “right people” is very important at this time.

“You have to meet the right people and keep knocking their doors so that they know you. Before the names of the candidates are announced by the political parties, it’s a very crucial time for the ticket seekers. I have been politically active for three decades and hope that I would get to serve the people of my state,” he said somewhat breathlessly.

Hundreds of ticket seekers like Bansal, from the five states -Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Mizoram and Delhi - where the assembly elections have been announced for next month, are thronging the various political party headquarters.

Anxious faces can be seen at both the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) headquarters in Ashoka Road and the Congress office in Akbar Road. Road blocks outside these main roads that leads to India Gate has also become a common sight as these aspirants come in their fancy cars along with their supporters to lend credence that they are the right choice.

Ram Karan Royal, another ticket seeker from Rajasthan, said that he has been hovering around the Congress headquarters for more than three-weeks now.

“I am from the Nagod district of Rajasthan. I have work at home, but this is such a crucial time that it’s important that I be here as much as possible. Therefore I have been going to and fro at least five times,” Royal told IANS.

“My father has been active in politics. From 1993-98 he was a member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) in Delhi. Therefore interest in politics has been ingrained in me,” added Royal, who is in his forties.

Ashok Kumar, sitting near the BJP headquarters, similarly said that he has been coming to the party office everyday for nearly one month.

Hailing from Madhya Pradesh, Kumar said: “It’s difficult to say how many people come here everyday but it could be anything from 800 to 1,000.”

“I am just hoping that I am luckier than the others though,” he added, sipping his tea.

Watching the entire spectacle from a distance, 18-year-old Lokesh Gurahiya perhaps is the one who is most excited and eagerly looking forwards to the day when the candidates’ names would be announced.

Looking at the scores of aspirants for party nomination at the Congress headquarters, he hoped to sell his tri-coloured flags and other trinkets.

“Although hundreds of ticket-seekers roam around the headquarters throughout the day, not many are interested in buying my ware. Probably a sticker or two to paste on the window shields of their cars, but that’s about it,” Gurahiya said.

Tri-coloured flags, stickers and stands which can be kept on the dashboard of the cars, with United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia Gandhi’s picture imposed on them, make up Gurahiya’s colourful collection which he sells in front of the office.

“Once the final list of candidates is announced, they and their supporters will buy these trinkets in bulk. Then my sales become more than double. That’s what I am waiting for,” he said hopefully.

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