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Meira Kumar, Paswan locked in direct contest in Bihar's Sasaram


Patna, May 18: Sasaram is gearing up for a direct contest from between the Congress leader Meira Kumar and BJPs sitting MP Chhedi Paswan.

File photo of Meira Kumar

While the former Lok Sabha Speaker, contesting as the Congress candidate representing the mahagathbandhan (grand alliance), invokes the legacy of her father on the campaign trail, Paswan pitches the contest as a fight between "Dilli ki beti versus son of the soil".

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Meira Kumar - the first woman Speaker to the Indian Parliament & daughter of Jagjivan Ram was elected from Sasaram Parliamentary constituency consecutively in the 2004 and 2009 Lok Sabha elections, whereas Chhedi Paswan has won this seat thrice in the past - 1989, 1991 and 2014 and coincidentally he took on Meira Kumar defeating her in those three terms. This is the fourth time they are in pitted against each other.

Through her campaign, Kumar has invoked the legacy of her father and former deputy Prime Minister Jagjivan Ram. While her father represented the constituency eight times, Kumar won it twice.

Paswan, who had formerly been the MP from the seat in 1989 and 1991 on a Janata Dal ticket, has once again been fielded by his party. Kumar's father, former Deputy Prime Minister Jagjivan Ram, had represented the reserved seat several times, mostly on a Congress ticket and twice as a Janata Party's candidate.

The Sasaram Lok Sabha seat, which goes to the polls on May 19, is virtually synonymous with the former deputy prime minister and socialist stalwart, the late Jagjivan Ram, Meira Kumar's father.

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