The newly elected BJP MLA from Jhagadia taluka of Bharuch district, Ritesh Vasava, who defeated his former aide and tribal leader Chhotu Vasava, announced that he will spend his salary as MLA for the welfare of widows in the constituency.
A seat reserved for Schedule Tribes, Jhagadia was with 75-year-old Chhotu Vasava since 1990 on ticket JD(U) and in 2017 on Bhartiya Tribal Party (BTP) ticket.
Ahead of the Assembly elections this time, a conflict erupted between Chhotu Vasava and his son Mahesh Vasava, who decided to contest from Jhagadia, instead of Dediapada seat, which he won in 2017 elections. The reason was said to be Chaitar Vasava, who was instrumental in Mahesh’s victory in 2017, being fielded from there by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).
Mahesh filed his nomination from Jhagadia as a BTP candidate, while Chhotu filed nomination from the same seat as independent. Later the dispute was sorted out and Mahesh pulled out of fray.
On Jhagadia, the BJP fielded Ritesh Vasava, a former close aide of Chhotu Vasava, who joined the BJP in 2020. Ritesh was the former president of Jhagadia taluka panchayat for seven years from 2011.
In his first assembly election, Ritesh Vasava emerged winner by defeating Chhotu Vasava by 23,500 votes. Ritesh got 89,993 votes, while Chhotu got 66,433 votes, AAP’s Urmila Bhagat got 19,722 votes and Congress’s Fatehsinh Vasava got 15,219 votes.
On Friday, at a victory rally in Jhagadia, Ritesh said, “Party workers worked hard and defeated my one-time boss Chhotu Vasava. I have decided to spend my monthly salary for the welfare of widows… There are around 1,900 widows in Jhagadia… we will also extend help to widows in Valia and Netrang talukas which falls under my constituency.”