Sachin, Nana Patekar, Hrithik lookalikes in Chhattisgarh campaign

November 3rd, 2008 - 5:50 pm ICT by IANS  

Sachin TendulkarRaipur, Nov 3 (IANS) If you are living in Chhattisgarh capital Raipur, don’t be surprised if you find Sachin Tendulkar knocking at your door early morning with a request for a cuppa and vote for the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).After a dull start, the campaign is heating up in the state for the two-phase Assembly polls to be held Nov 14 and 20 with duplicates of cricket star Sachin Tendulkar and film stars, Nana Patekar, Hrithik Roshan and Mithun Chakraborty hitting the streets.

A family in Sadar Bazaar, who were among the first few contacted by a Sachin duplicate just could not believe for a while that Tendulkar would come to their home.

Salma, 39, said: “I asked my son how come Sachin is roaming here rather than playing cricket against Australia, till my husband said he was just the cricketer’s lookalike.”

“My nine-year-old son Rehan was thrilled when he responded to the doorbell Sunday morning to find Sachin himself standing with three friends. Rehan brought them to the dining hall and our family joined them,” she told IANS. They are a family of five.

“But Sachin was in a hurry, he refused to wait for some nice food we would offer them. He just asked for tea and reminded us how our votes are important and advised us to prefer the BJP,” she told IANS.

Senior minister Brijmohan Agrawal, contesting from Raipur city (South), has called in duplicates of Sachin, Nana, Hrithik and Mithun from Mumbai and Indore for his campaign. Agrawal has been winning for the past four consecutive elections.

Polling for this constituency will be held on Nov 20.

The duplicates of the stars who have reportedly been assured of a good remuneration are conducting door-to-door visits in Agrawal’s segment that has 174,000 voters.

Agrawal, who got elected from Raipur urban seat for the fourth consecutive time with his victory margins shooting up every time, is finding the going tough this time as his favourite seat has been scrapped after delimitation.

Raipur that had earlier two seats, Raipur urban and Raipur rural, has now four seats — Raipur rural, Raipur city north, Raipur city west and Raipur city south. Agrawal is contesting from the last.

Congress has fielded its state Youth Congress president Yogesh Tiwari to halt the winning streak of 49-year-old Agrawal, who holds number two position in the 13-member BJP council of ministers after Chief Minister Raman Singh.

Party sources claim the stars’ duplicates are proving handy for the BJP minister and during the week-long campaign since Nov 2 they will try to cover about 80 per cent families, including 17,400 Muslims and 11,000 Oriya families who hold key to Agrawal’s fate.

Agrawal himself did not wish to discuss much his strategy. When contacted, he only said: “Using duplicates of popular figures is not a new trend. In all elections, candidates use different ways to meet the voters and impress them.”

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