Mixed fortunes for cricketers, administrators in India's elections
Narendra Modi, the president of the Gujarat Cricket Association, is set to become India's prime minister after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) swept the 2014 general elections by a single-party majority. Modi, who contested from Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh and Vadodara in Gujarat, won both seats by big margins, even as other BCCI administrators and former cricketers had mixed results.
Kaif, who is an active domestic cricketer for Uttar Pradesh, had contested the election from the Phulpur constituency in the state. He polled less than a lakh votes and finished a distant fourth as the seat was eventually won by the BJP candidate Keshav Prasad Maurya.
Azharuddin, meanwhile, was contesting his second Lok Sabha election. The former India captain had been elected from the parliamentary constituency of Moradabad, UP in 2009, but chose to contest from the Tonk-Sawai Madhopur seat in Rajasthan. Azharuddin got over four lakh votes but was beaten by the BJP candidate Sukhbir Singh Jaunapuria.
Former allrounder Kirti Azad, who was a member of the 1983 World Cup-winning squad, representing the BJP, won the election from the Darbhanga constituency in Bihar for the third time.
The politician-administrators in the BCCI had a mixed day. BJP's Arun Jaitley, who had stepped down as BCCI vice-president last year to focus on the general elections, lost in Amritsar to former Punjab chief minister Captain Amrinder Singh. Incidentally, the BJP had nominated Jaitley as its candidate for the seat over former batsman Navjot Singh Sidhu.
Anurag Thakur, Jaitley's party colleague and joint secretary of the BCCI, was elected from the Hamirpur constituency in Himachal Pradesh for his third term in the lower house of parliament.
Presidents of two state associations were also in the fray during the elections. Jammu & Kashmir Cricket Association president Farooq Abdullah lost the Srinagar parliamentary constituency, but Jyotiraditya Scindia, who heads the Madhya Pradesh Cricket Association and also served on various committees in the BCCI, won by a big margin in Guna, Madhya Pradesh.