Patna: A National Democratic Alliance (NDA) candidate in Bihar gave birth to a baby girl right in the midst of electioneering, leaving her in a peculiar situation at this critical juncture. With the candidate in the hospital, the responsibility of her poll campaigns has fallen on the shoulders of her family, neighbours and party workers.
Shushumlata Kushwaha, 35, who was fielded by the Janata Dal United (JD-U) from Jagdishpur seat in Bihar, found herself in an awkward situation when she suddenly developed labour pain right during the poll campaign on Saturday evening and had to be admitted to a hospital in Patna when she delivered a baby girl. Both the mother and the baby are safe, doctors said.
The news was shared by none other than chief minister Nitish Kumar himself who on Sunday had gone to address an election rally in favour of the candidate who was found missing from the dais.
“Our candidate has been blessed with a baby girl during the holy navratra (a prominent Hindu festival that spans nine nights). This is an auspicious sign,” the chief minister said, addressing the crowds. He also blessed the candidate from the dais.
Her absence from the poll campaign at this critical time has hugely worried the candidate. “She is anxious about the poll campaign but I have advised her not to worry,” her husband Manji Chuadhary said.
Her tension emanates from the fact that she is contesting the election for the first time. The only election she had contested before was that of the village council which she won and became the village council chief.
According to her husband, she continued her poll campaign in the areas despite having the advanced stage of pregnancy. “She campaigned even on Saturday,” Chaudhary said. The couple already has a seven-year-old daughter.
Again, she is the only candidate among total 18 nominees in the fray and faces two powerful candidates in the poll arena—sitting Rashtriya Janata Dal lawmaker Ram Vishun Singh Lohia and Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) candidate Bhagwan Singh Kushwaha. A former minister, Kushwaha is a JD-U rebel who jumped into the election arena after being denied a ticket by the party.
According to villagers, the candidate has been very active in her areas and has set up a self-help group which supplies sanitary napkins to young girls in the rural areas.