What did Hooda say?
While addressing a poll rally Panipat on Sunday, Hooda termed his embarrassment as an insult to Haryana and expressed confidence that people will vote for the Congress once again.
"What happened at Kaithal, you all know... Though tit-for-tat is against our culture, but we will definitely avenge what happened there in a different way. Haryana never tolerates an insult. My insult was an insult to Haryana," Hooda said.
"I request you to give them a befitting reply using your power of ballot in the assembly polls," he added.
What had happened at Kaithal rally?
Bhupinder Singh Hooda had faced hooting from a section of the crowd at the function attended by the Prime Minister in Kaithal after laying the foundation stone of a highway project on August 19.
Miffed at jeering Hooda had immediately reacted saying he will not attend any function of the Prime Minister or union ministers if the Haryana BJP leadership did not change its attitude.
Hooda playing victim card for poll gains?
But, seems Hooda wants to play victim card by associating his humiliation with entire Haryana to garner people's sentiments. However, it is still not clear why a particular section of the crowd present at the rally jeered at the Haryana CM who is facing all round criticism for rampant corruption in the state. There is a popular anti-incumbency against Hooda Government in the state and playing victim card would help the Congress grab some quick sympathy which the party would want to translate into votes.
Will playing victim card help Congress in Haryana polls?
Hooda seems to have learnt this victim card by Narendra Modi who throughout his Lok Sabha poll campaigns had raised the issue that the Congress and SP have mocked his being a ‘tea-seller'. But, experts feel Hooda's issue is too small and would not help him and his party in the long run.
All that could help the Congress in the Lok Sabha polls will be its good work. The party had won 40 seats in the 90-member Haryana assembly in 2009, under the leadership of Hooda, which was way short of the magical figure of 45 seats. Hooda managed to come to power by roping in independent legislators and defectors from Kuldeep Bishnoi's Haryana Janhit Congress to the Congress fold.
And Hooda's credibility has depleted further in his ongoing term hence, the Congress strongman is leaving no stones unturned to come to power for the third consecutive time. But, Hooda needs to take another lesson from Narendra Modi's poll campaign that the Gujarat CM had mainly pitched for development work and anti-graft which the people welcomed with open hands. Solely playing 'victim' would not help anyone to win elections.