In the Madhya Pradesh assembly poll fray, Congress leader Lakshman Singh feels his elder brother and former chief minister Digvijaya Singh is “inseparable” from politics as he breathes, drinks and sleeps it.
Lakshman Singh, contesting the assembly polls as a Congress candidate from the adjacent Chachauda seat in Guna district in Madhya Pradesh, said he himself never planned his political career but his brother is a “master” in politics.
“He (Digvijaya) had said he will not be the CM candidate (if Congress comes to power in Madhya Pradash). But, he is very active in politics and he will continue to be in politics. You can’t separate Digvijaya Singh from politics. Nobody can. He breathes, drinks, eats, sleeps politics. He is a master at it,” Lakshman Singh told PTI in an interview.
He asserted that Digvijaya Singh was not only required in the state but also in the country and the party has made use of him and they will continue to do so after the Madhya Pradesh election results come in the favour of the Congress party.
Digvijaya Singh, 71, was the chief minister of the state for 10 years (between 1993-2003) and has made it clear on several occasions that he was not eyeing the post of chief minister again if the Congress wins these assembly elections.
Asked about a recent controversy where Digvijaya Singh was heard saying in a video that the Congress votes get reduced if he campaigns for it, Lakshman Singh defended his brother saying he was just trying to be “witty” and was asking his partymen to put in a united effort to secure victory in this electoral battle.
Digvijaya Singh had also later clarified that the video was “not shown in a proper manner” and only one part of it was put on the social media.
Asked if he was looking for a role for himself if the party wins the state polls, Lakshman Singh said he was only a determined soldier of the party.
“I have never planned my political career. I am not a very shrewd planner. I like to work at the grassroots level. I have always worked at the grassroots level and never asked for ticket anytime for me…you can ask my brother, you can ask the party also,” he said.
“I never applied for ticket and I never chased any leader to give me a ticket,” Lakshman Singh said.
“Ticket came to me, I fought it out and gave results. Ticket didn’t come to me fair enough, no problem, I work for the party. This time also party has trusted me and put faith in me and I will give results,” he said.
The 63-year-old leader is pitted against BJP’s sitting MLA Mamta Meena in the latest elections and has been a five-time Member of Parliament (MP) and two-time MLA from the state.
The Chachauda seat is located next to the Raghogarh assembly seat of the state which is a stronghold of the royal family of the Singh’s since 1977. Digvijaya Singh’s son Jaivardhan is in fray for the second time on this seat. In 2013, he had won the contest by a margin of over 58,000 votes.
Lakshman Singh had left the Congress party in 2003 after it lost the assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh and had subsequently joined the BJP and won the 2004 Lok Sabha elections from the Rajgarh seat, He then lost the polls in 2009.
He was later expelled by the BJP for anti-party activities after he criticised the then party president Nitin Gadkari for some alleged remarks against his family. He rejoined Congress in 2013.
Madhya Pradesh will vote in a single phase on November 28 for its 230 seat assembly and the Congress has put everything at stake to regain power in the state where it has been out of government for last 15 years. The BJP, similarly, is working to win the battle again on the plank of development and pro-incumbency.