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Shahdol MP Gyan Singh Raises Banner of Revolt as BJP Gives Ticket to Congress Turncoat

Shahdol MP Gyan Singh Raises Banner of Revolt as BJP Gives Ticket to Congress Turncoat

Gyan Singh is BJP’s sole prominent face in Shahdol division, where politics is primarily dominated by Scheduled Tribes.

Bhopal: With barely a fortnight left for the first phase of polling in general elections, the BJP in Madhya Pradesh is battling rebellion in the ranks over ticket distribution.

The latest to voice discontent at being denied a ticket is senior party leader and Shahdol MP Gyan Singh. The five-time MLA and three-time MP is the party’s sole prominent face in Shahdol division, where politics is primarily dominated by Scheduled Tribes.

“I am not bothered by who got the ticket, but I am disappointed at being denied one for no reason,” a visibly upset Singh told reporters.

The Shahdol ticket has instead gone to Himadri Singh, daughter of former Union minister Dalbir Singh who had switched over to the BJP from the Congress recently. Himadri had reportedly been promised the ticket before switching parties. She had lost to Gyan Singh in the 2016 bypoll. Singh asks how can he now be expected to campaign for a candidate who was the subject of his criticism in the bypoll.

Singh, who has threatened to contest as an Independent candidate, is yet to lose an election.

The other development that makes the Shahdol contest interesting is the fact that while former Congress leader Himadri is now contesting on a BJP ticket, former BJP MLA Pramila Singh is fighting on a Congress one.

Ujjain is proving to be another cause for concern for the BJP, with supporters of Premchand Guddu taking out rallies to demand a ticket for their leader. The BJP has nominated Anil Firozia from Ujjain, ignoring Guddu who had switched to the BJP from Congress ahead of Assembly polls last year.

Former MP Ashok Argal and sitting MP Anoop Mishra too are said to be upset by denial of ticket. Argal reportedly is planning to switch to the Congress.

Meanwhile, the RSS is said to be concerned with the Bhopal seat since the Congress has fielded party veteran Digvijaya Singh from the constituency. In the run-up to the contest, Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Uma Bharti, Kailash Vijayvargiya and Rakesh Singh have launched scathing attacks on Digvijaya, while Pragya Bharti has offered to fight against Congress.

RSS leader Bhaiyyaji Joshi reached Bhopal on Tuesday and held meetings with the BJP and RSS office-bearers.