New Delhi: Meena Kumari who contested the Rajasthan assembly elections as an independent candidate against her father, BJP’s Jairam Jatav, from the Alwar Rural seat, as a mark of protest against alleged discrimination at home, failed to make a mark, securing less than 500 votes till 1.30 p.m Sunday.
What may come as consolation to her is the fact that her father too appeared to be heading towards a defeat, trailing by 22,000 votes behind his main rival Tikaram Jully of the Congress, who had won the seat in 2018 as well.
Jatav had won from Alwar Rural on a BJP symbol in the 2013 elections.
A total of 10 candidates were in the fray in this seat this time, including Mukesh Kumar of the Rashtriya Loktantrik Party (RLP), Jagdish Prasad of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and Majavir Rajoria of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).
Speaking to ThePrint on the campaign trail, Kumari had said that she was “forced to come out of the kitchen” to contest against her father because of the “ill-treatment” faced at home. She described Jatav as a “superstitious man” who “tortured” her for bringing “bad luck” to the family.
“The reason I am fighting the election is that he does not respect his own daughter. So, how can he respect others’ daughters?” she had said.
Jatav, on the other hand, claimed at the time that his daughter was hardly a factor, adding that he considered Jully of the Congress his main contender.
Kumari was in the fray to cut votes but didn’t succeed, Jatav had told ThePrint. Alleging a “Congress ploy” behind her campaign, he also claimed that the “Congress candidate tried this (to promote her candidacy) over the last six months through funding and lalach (greed)”.
‘Father doesn’t listen to me’
A family member from Kumari’s husband’s side, refusing to be identified, had said that she had a rough childhood.
“Jatav’s first son died soon after birth. Then Kumari was born. Someone told him (Jatav) that the daughter brought ill fate with her and was the reason for his son’s death,” said the family member.
“I came into politics because my father doesn’t listen to me but hopefully people will,” Kumari had told ThePrint while canvassing for votes.
When Jatav contested from Alwar Rural in 2013, Kumari was by her father’s side on the campaign trail. He defeated Jully then by 26,799 votes.
In 2018, Jully made a comeback by trouncing Ramkishan of the BJP — who was given the ticket instead of Jatav — with a sizable margin of 26,477 votes.
(Edited by Amrtansh Arora)
Source: The Print