Jamshedpur all agog over red-hot Das vs Roy fight
Campaigning in steel city has never been this interesting.
With just four days left for Jamshedpur East to go to the polls, chief minister Raghubar Das and his estranged cabinet colleague Saryu Roy are leaving nothing to fate as far as canvassing in the constituency is concerned.
On Monday, Roy campaigned at the slums in Chhayanagar, Bhuiyandih and Babudih besides other smaller pockets such as Jamshedpur Bar Association. Das, too, held a road show at the densely populated Lalbhatta, Babudih and Sitaramdera in the morning.
Das, on his part, first paid homage to freedom fighter Birsa Munda at Lalbhatta at 7.30am and then stepped into an open SUV for the road show. He waved at the residents, who showered him with flowers from balconies and roof tops. The CM’s road show finally halted at Sitaramdera — a full 4km stretch.
Das then travelled to Shikaripara in Dumka to accompany the local BJP candidate who filed his nomination. Returning to the steel city, the CM undertook a padyatra in Kashidih, Refugee Colony and Ambagan areas.
Das’s foot march timing, however, clashed with that of his former BJP mate in Lalbhatta and Babudih. By the time Roy reached Lalbhatta, Das was already walking there.
Result: Roy postponed his padyatra and covered the areas by riding pillion on a motorcycle in the afternoon.
Insiders in the BJP said the contest between Das and Roy was ironical, as some in the Roy faction were sporting the BJP’s lotus to garner support. “It seems most of the people living in bigger slums such as Birsanagar, Baridih and Bagunhatu are bent on defeating Das. The situation is so bad in Birsanagar that the BJP is not finding enough men to handle the polling booths. But the situation is changing after Das kicked off his campaign on Saturday,” said a BJP worker.
He claimed the padyatras undertaken by the chief minister are witnessing very few takers unlike the hundreds of people who used to accompany him during such public programmes in during earlier elections.