Bhopal: The Congress announced its third list of 13 candidates late on Monday for the Madhya Pradesh assembly elections.
Former Samajwadi Party leader Arif Masood, a controversial politician from Old city Bhopal, has been given a ticket from Bhopal Madhya and will be pitted against the BJP’s Surendra Nath Singh, an aide of chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
Masood is also an executive member of the All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) and has been vocal against the Narendra Modi government, especially on the issue of triple talaq. “There are no charges against me and I had clarified to the party that I would contest this time,” Masood said after getting the nomination. Bhopal Madhya has a sizeable Muslim population.
MPCC president and Kamal Nath loyalist Deepak Saxena has been nominated from Chhindwara, while sitting MLA Mahendra Singh Sisodia has been re-nominated.
Sisodia had defeated former minister Kanhaiya Lal Agrawal in 2013.
In Brahmin-dominated Maihar seat in Satna, Congress has opted for Srikant Chaturvedi to take on Narayan Tripathi who had deserted the grand old party after a rift with Leader of Opposition Ajay Singh.
Following in the footsteps of the Congress, the ruling BJP is also treading cautiously amid rebellion over ticket distribution. After announcing 177 candidates, the party announced 17 candidates on Monday. A third fake list also made the rounds on social media, claiming that party general secretary Kailash Vijayavagiya, his son Akash and staunch supporter Ramesh Mendola had been nominated.
The party is also in a fix on ticket distribution in Indore and senior leaders Vinay Sahastrabuddhe and Narendra Singh Tomar held consultations with Lok Sabha Speaker and Indore MP Sumitra Mahajan over the same.
Deliberations are on in seats including Govindpura where veteran Babulal Gaur has taken on the party alone, Seoni Malwa and Panna.