Bhopal: The Congress on Thursday fielded Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath’s son Nakul Nath from the Chhindwara Lok Sabha constituency. The chief minister will also contest the Assembly bypoll from Chhindwara constituency.
The bypoll will be held along with the Lok Sabha elections in the state. The assembly seat was vacated by Congress' Deepak Saxena after Kamal Nath, the sitting Chhindwara MP, took over
as chief minister and consequently needed to get elected to the state legislature.
The list, however, did not include the names of candidates from prestigious seats such as Gwalior and Indore. The party also did not announce the name of senior leader Jyotiraditya Scindia from Guna-Shivpuri.
With this list, the Congress has so far announced candidates for 21 out of 29 Lok Sabha seats in Madhya Pradesh. The party named Ajay Singh, son of late Union minister Arjun Singh, from their home turf of Sidhi. It has also declared the candidature of former Union minister Arun Yadav from Khandwa, Vivek Tankha from Jabalpur, Prabhu Singh Thakur from Sagar, Pratap Singh Lodhi from Damoh, Raja Ram Tripathi from Satna, Siddharth Tiwari from Rewa, Kamal Maravi from Mandla, Prahlad Tipaniya from Dewas, Babulal Malviya from Ujjain, and Govind Muzalde from Khargone.
Tankha, a Rajya Sabha MP from the state, was initially reluctant to candidate. However, Kamal Nath prevailed on him to change his mind and Tankha will now contest from Jabalpur against BJP state chief Rakesh Singh.
An eminent lawyer, Tankha has cordial relations with all the factions in the MP Congress and also shares a good rapport with the Gandhi family.
Siddharth Tiwari’s candidature came as no surprise, with the party looking to cash in on the sympathy wave around the death of his father, Congress leader Sundarlal Tiwari. The Congress also lacks a prominent face in Rewa politics. Siddharth Tiwari’s grandfather, Sriniwas Tiwari, was a Congress veteran and a powerhouse in Vindhya politics.
Tipaniya is a noted folk singer, will contest in his maiden election.
Contrary to speculation, Pravina Bachchan, wife of Home minister Bala Bachchan, was snubbed by the Congress. The party, instead, declared Muzalde’s name from Khargone.
The party had earlier named nine candidates while the BJP has named 18 candidates so far.