Shortly after driving to the Haryana Vidhan Sabha on a tractor to take oath as an MLA, INLD leader Abhay Singh Chautala said he will not hesitate from resigning again if farm unions say they want him to take the step. The Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) general secretary had won the Ellenabad Assembly seat in the bypolls necessitated by own resignation over the Centre’s farm laws.
Reacting to his statement, Haryana Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala described him as a “non-serious politician”. The INLD leader termed his win in the Ellenabad bypolls as a victory of farmers and said he won’t hesitate from resigning again over the laws.
Replying to a question, the MLA said he will be going to Delhi’s Singhu, Tikri, Ghazipur and Shahjahanpur borders to meet the protesting farmers. “I will meet farmers. If farm unions tell me that such a step is needed for the repeal of black farm laws, then I will not hesitate from resigning again,” he said.
Chautala, who is the son of the INLD president and former chief minister O P Chautala, drove a green-coloured tractor to the Vidhan Sabha building from his Sector 9 residence here. The MLA was accompanied by some of his family members, INLD state unit president Nafe Singh Rathi and former Haryana DGP M S Malik.
Abhay Chautala alleged that the state government blatantly misused official machinery in the bypolls and the powers that be lured the voters with money. “We made 15 complaints to the Election Commission regarding the violation of the model code of conduct and also gave proof, including videos, in this regard but we did not get any response,” he alleged.
“We demand an inquiry by a sitting judge into blatant misuse of official machinery,” the MLA said. He said in a peaceful constituency, heavy deployment of police and paramilitary forces defied logic.
“They made it look like this bypoll was being held in Kashmir Valley. BJP candidate and those campaigning in his favour used to be accompanied by 20 vehicles of police and paramilitary forces,” said Chautala. Replying to a question on his victory margin narrowing this time as against the 2019 Assembly polls when he had won by nearly 12,000 votes, Chautala said last time only 57,000 votes were polled in his favour in comparison to nearly 65,000 this time.
“This is despite the fact that the BJP, JJP and the Haryana Lokhit Party were fighting the polls together against me and even the Congress had joined hands with them to see that I lose, but their hopes were dashed,” said Chautala. Abhay said JJP chief Ajay Singh Chautala, who is his elder brother, the latter’s MLA wife Naina Chautala and their sons Dushyant Chautala and Digvijay Chautala tried their best to see that he loses the bypolls.
“Ajay Singh, his both sons, bhabhi (sister-in-law Naina) used to campaign door-to-door until late in the night. More than Gobind, it was they who were fighting polls, he said. Abhay Chautala said the Congress candidate had got 35,000 votes in the 2019 Assembly polls from the constituency but he lost security deposits this time.
He said the poor show by the Congress resulted in some votes being transferred to the BJP candidate. Meanwhile, Haryana’s Deputy Chief Minister Dushyant Chautala said Abhay was a “non-serious politician”. Dushyant said BJP-JJP candidate Gobind Kanda secured nearly 60,000 votes and gave a tough fight to Abhay, which in itself was a victory for BJP-JJP workers.
Making a reference to Abhay, Dushyant said those who used to claim that they will win with a margin of over 30,000 votes have been shown the mirror by people of Ellenabad.
When asked that Abhay has said if farmers again ask him to resign he will not hesitate, Dushyant said, “He has made resignation thing a joke. Does an elected representative have no responsibility towards those who chose him. This is why I often say he is a non-serious politician.”
The INLD leader had defeated his nearest rival JJP-backed BJP candidate Gobind Kanda by a margin of 6,739 votes.
Pawan Beniwal of the Congress came a distant third. Gobind Kanda, the brother of Haryana Lokhit Party chief and MLA Gopal Kanda, joined the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) last month.
Beniwal, who had unsuccessfully contested the previous Assembly polls against Chautala, recently switched over from the BJP to the Congress.