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In Ambala, it's old rivals Selja and Kataria to face each other again

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Ambala, May 09: As the voting day is drawing closer, the Ambala (reserved) parliamentary seat Ambala reserved Lok Sabha constituency in Haryana will see yet another Congress-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) slugfest with old rivals Kumari Selja and the saffron party's sitting MP Rattan Lal Kataria coming face to face once again.

Since 1967, the seat has witnessed a direct contest between the Congress and BJP.

Rattan Lal Kataria

The Congress has won the seat nine times while the BJP has been successful on six occasions. Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) was the only non-Congress, non-BJP outfit to have won the seat in 1998 after an alliance with Indian National Lok Dal (INLD).

The state will go to polls on May 12.

BJP has its MLAs in all the 9 nine assembly segments including Kalka, Panchkula, Ambala Cantt, Ambala City and Yamunanagar.

BJP candidate Kataria has contested from Ambala four times and won twice in 1999 and 2014. While Congress' Selja won it in 2004 and 2009. In 2014 she was nominated for Rajya Sabha.

Kataria is banking on Modi while Selja is stressing on 'Nyay', the minimum income guarantee scheme of Rs 72000 per annum to poor persons announced by the Congress.

In all, 18 candidates are in the fray including independents. Besides the Congress and the BJP, Rampal Balmiki of the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD), and Naresh Saran of the BSP-Loktantra Suraksha Party alliance are also in the contest.

Despite that, Schedule Caste and Backward Communities have dominated the political narrative in Ambala which has around 5 lakh voters.

However, winning Ambala Lok Sabha constituency seat will not be a cakewalk for BJP as the Modi wave has faded.

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