Patna: Slain Ranvir Sena chief Brahmeshwar Singh`s son Indu Bhusan, who is contesting the Lok Sabha election from Patliputra constituency in Patna, has queered the pitch for the BJP.
Indu Bhusan, who is a candidate of the Desi Kisan Party, is eyeing the support of farmers, particularly of his castemen - landed upper caste Bhumihars - who are considered pro-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
Indu Bhusan`s supporters are also hopeful of getting the support of another upper caste, Rajput, in this semi-urban and rural constituency.
Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad has pitted his elder daughter Misa Bharti from Patliputra constituency in Patna as a party candidate. She is facing BJP`s Ram Kirpal Yadav, Lalu`s close confidante and senior RJD leader who quit after being denied a ticket to contest. He then joined the BJP.
Bihar`s ruling Janata Dal-United candidate and sitting MP from Patliputra is Ranjan Prasad Yadav. In the last Lok Sabha polls, Ranjan defeated Lalu Prasad by over 25,000 votes.
Indu Bhusan`s father Brahmeshwar Singh contested the 2004 Lok Sabha polls as an Independent candidate from Arrah but was defeated.
"BJP`s worry lies in the fact that the party was sure of overwhelming support of Bhumihar community but Indu Bhusan`s entry will damage it. He is likely to divide their votes in his favour. After all, he is son of slain Ranvir Sena chief," said Sanket Kumar Singh, a businessman in Bihta, near Patna.
Sanket, a supporter of the Ranvir Sena, an upper caste militia, is not alone. Hundreds like him have extended their support to Indu Bhusan at the cost of the BJP, their first choice before he entered the fray.
"We will vote for Indu Bhusan because he represents our caste...," said Ramesh Sharma, a farmer of Naubatpur.
Indu Bhusan heads the Akhil Bharatiya Rashtrawadi Kisan Sanghathan, a political outfit of the outlawed Ranvir Sena that was founded by the slain Ranvir Sena chief.
"I have decided to contest the Lok Sabha polls in view of demand of the supporters," Bhusan told IANS here.
The contest is among three formidable Yadav candidates of the RJD, BJP and ruling JD-U in Patliputra. They are all vying for the majority vote of their castemen, about 35 percent of 16 lakh strong electorate.
"Yadav`s vote will be divided among the three. BJP was confident of hundred percent support of Bhumihars. (But) with Indu Bhusan in the fray, he will take away at least a quarter of their support and that will put BJP in trouble," Sharma said.