BHOPAL: Opposition Congress released names of nine more candidates for the coming assembly by-elections in Madhya Pradesh. Among the nine candidates declared by the grand old party on Sunday, three are BJP deserters.
Out of the three former BJP leaders, ex-MLA Parul Sahu (who won in 2013, but lost in 2018 from Surkhi seat) has been fielded from Surkhi seat of Sagar district in Bundelkhand region against three-time former MLA and present cabinet minister Govind Singh Rajput, while another 2018 BJP loser Satish Sikarwar has been fielded from Gwalior East seat against BJP’s Munnalal Goyal.
Ajab Singh Kushwah, another 2018 BJP loser, has been fielded from Sumawali seat of Morena district against four-time former MLA and present cabinet minister Adal Singh Kansana. Importantly, Kushwah has finished second three times in a row -- as BJP candidate in 2018 and BSP candidate in 2013 and 2008.
With this the three seats – Surkhi (Sagar), Gwalior East and Sumawali (Morena) will see a rerun of the 2018 poll contest. All 2018 winners, including Govind Singh Rajput, Munnalal Goyal and Adal Singh Kansana will be fighting as BJP candidates, while the 2018 loser BJP candidates will be in the fray on Congress ticket.
The six other candidates declared by Congress on Sunday, include Pankaj Upadhyaya from Joura in Morena district, ex-MLA Harivallabh Shukla from Pohri (Shivpuri), Kanhaiya Ram Lodhi from Mungaoli (Ashok Nagar), Abhishek Singh Tinku Bana from Badnawar (Dhar), Rakesh Patidar from Suwasara (Mandsaur) and three-time former Congress MLA Raj Narayan Singh’s son Uttam Raj Narayan Singh from Mandhata (Khandwa).
With this, the Congress has to finalise only four more candidates for the 28 assembly by-elections. The by-polls have been necessitated by the resignation of 25 Congress MLAs, who will now contest as BJP candidates and death of three sitting legislators.
Importantly, the Election Commission of India (ECI) will reportedly announce the dates for the by-elections on Tuesday.