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'My wine in their bottle': Bhupinder Hooda on Modi govt's quota for poor

Hooda-led Govt had in 2013 approved a proposal of 10% reservation for economically poor sections in general category.

Press Trust of India  |  Sonipat 

Bhupinder Singh Hooda, former CM of Haryana, is banking on the development work he had done for the state
Bhupinder Singh Hooda, former CM of Haryana

Haryana's former two-time Singh dubs the Modi government's 10 per cent for poor in the general category "his wine in their bottle" and says though the BJP can take credit for his work, it will not get the votes.

Accusing the BJP of indulging in "political vendetta", the senior leader, who is contesting from Sonipat Lok Sabha seat, alleged that the CBI raids at his Rohtak residence in January were aimed at maligning him ahead of the May 12 election.

"I brought it (for poor in general category) in first. I ensured that irrespective of caste and economy, everybody gets They (BJP) opposed it at that time. Now they have repackaged it at the national level and are trying to reap its benefits. It is my wine in their bottle," told in an interview.

The Hooda-led government had in 2013 approved a proposal to grant 10 per cent reservation to economically weaker sections in the general category on the recommendation of the Backward Classes Commission.

"They (BJP) think they can take credit for my work; they certainly can, but they cannot get votes on its basis. People are shrewd enough to decide, they can make a mistake once but not again and again," the said.

The is banking on and his son Deepender Singh Hooda, who is seeking re-election from Rohtak for a fourth time, to revive the party's fortunes in Haryana.

Hoodas are one of the few clans that have dominated the political scenario in Haryana for decades.

Hooda first contested in 1952 from the Rohtak Lok Sabha constituency and won with a huge margin. He retained the seat in the next election and was elected to the Rajya Sabha.

Speaking about his initial reluctance to contest the polls this year, Hooda said, "I was apprehensive, but if the party leadership wants me to contest, I will not say no to it. My wife is from Sonipat. It has also been my father's constituency when he was in the Lok Sabha. It is certainly my stronghold and I will win."

"They (BJP) have tried hard to malign my image ahead of the elections, using the CBI to conduct raids at my place. Nothing wrong has been done, nothing wrong has been found. This is all political vendetta which they think can influence the elections, but it will not," the 72-year-old prominent Jat said.

The CBI conducted the raid in connection with alleged irregularities in land allotment during Hooda's tenure as Haryana in 2009.

The Congress said Haryana "burnt" on three occasions under the Manohar Lal Khattar-led BJP government and the people will not forget that.

"They did it at the time of (arrest) of Rampal (a self-styled godman), they did it during the reservation agitation and (during) the Sirsa-based Dera violence. They burnt Haryana. Do they think people will forget that? They made tall promises and could not fulfil any of them," he said.

Hooda is pitted against BJP's sitting and Digvijay Chautala, also a Jat, of the combine.

First Published: Fri, May 10 2019. 12:06 IST