A single Orissa royal family of several political hues

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Balangir (Orissa), Apr 16 (ANI): Members of Singhdeo, the royal family of Balangir in Orissa, are contesting against each other in the general elections to the Lok Sabha and the state legislature.Three-time Member of Parliament Sangeeta Singhdeo of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is facing competition from another member of the royal family, Kalikesh Singhdeo.

Kalikesh Singhdeo happens to be her brother-in-law and also a member of the Orissa legislature, representing the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) party from Saintala constituency.

For the Patnagarh assembly seat, Kanak Vardhan Singhdeo, Sangeeta Singhdeo's husband is contesting against his younger brother's wife Prakriti Devi Singhdeo.

No wonder, addressing an electioneering rally, Sangeeta Singhdeo called the electoral battle in the family as a soap opera.

She is not particularly happy with Prakriti Singhdeo contesting against her husband.

"Whatever she is doing is rather unfortunate. We are a democracy. Anyone can contest elections. Even I am a politician and the elder daughter-in-law of a royal family. But I am doing politics with a positive attitude. She was campaigning in a different constituency during the municipal elections. She could have contested from there. If so, we would not have faced any problem," said Sangeeta.

Adding to all this is the matriarch of the family, Premlata Kumari Devi.

Interestingly, she is not campaigning for her son, Kanak Vardhan Singhdeo but her daughter-in-law, Prakriti Singhdeo!

As for her sister-in-law's (Sangeeta Singhdeo) grouse at Prakriti Singhdeo entering the poll fray, the latter contended that the people wanted her to contest.

"I did not choose the Patnagarh seat, but the people called me here. During municipal elections, I saw the constituency and the condition. People asked me to contest from here," said Prakriti Singhdeo.About a couple of months ago, Premlata Devi had written a letter to the BJP chief L.K Advani, urging him not to give BJP tickets to Sangeeta Singhdeo and Kanak Vardhan Singhdeo.

She had even mentioned that she would campaign against them if they were nominated by the party. By Sharda Lahangir (ANI)

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