Kavita Khanna, wife of late Union Minister and Gurdaspur MP Vinod Khanna, on Saturday expressed her dismay over the BJP’s decision to field actor Sunny Deol from the constituency after purportedly promising to allot the seat to her, PTI reported. But Kavita Khanna said she will still support Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the Lok Sabha polls despite having been “approached by many other parties”.
Vinod Khanna won the Gurdaspur seat four times – in 1998, 1999, 2004 and 2014. He died in 2017 leaving the seat vacant. Congress MP Sunil Jakhar won the seat in the bye-poll that was held subsequently.
Kavita Khanna refuted queries about contesting the polls as an Independent candidate. “I felt abandoned and rejected,” she told reporters. “I was made to feel absolutely insignificant. Nobody from the party called me to say there is another candidate. I was in Delhi when he [Deol] joined. I would have gone had they called. I have been approached by many other parties,” she said addressing the media at Press Club of India here.
Kavita Khanna claimed that she was denied the ticket only at the end. “I felt hurt because I understand the party has the right to decide a candidate but there is a way of doing it,” she was quoted as saying.
Kavita Khanna said she deserved the seat because of the work she did along with her husband in the constituency. “My husband was popularly known as ‘sardar of bridges’ for connecting remote villages in his constituency,” she said. “I have walked barefoot with him to work for the people. I am confident that had I stood as an Independent, I would have won. The BJP has my support, my PM has my support. At the same time, I have to insist that this can’t happen again, because I am making a personal sacrifice.”
Sunny Deol is among multiple artists who have joined the BJP recently.