Congress clears 88 sitting MPs for LS poll
Tara Shankar Sahay in New Delhi
The Congress leadership has released the first list of nominees for the general election, featuring 88 out of the 141 sitting party MPs. Former prime minister P V Narasimha Rao's name does not figure in the list.
Releasing the list, party spokesman V N Gadgil requested the media not to ask him why a particular candidate's name has not been cleared so far. He added that the party's central election committee would meet on January 17, 18, 19 and, if necessary 20, to discuss the names of other sitting party candidates.
Rao had contested from Nandyal in Andhra Pradesh and Behrampur in Orissa. A decision on these constituencies is pending.
Senior party officials maintained that if Rao was to contest the poll, his name would have figured in today's list. As this did not happen, the chances of his contesting the poll now seem remote.
Significantly, Rao's son P V Rajeshwar Rao's name has been cleared for the contest from the Secunderabad constituency in Andhra Pradesh.
Kotla Vijayabhaskara Reddy will contest from Kurnool, Dr Y S Rajshekhar Reddy from Cuddapah, Mallikarjun from Mahbubnagar and G Venkatswamy from Peddapalli (reserved) constituency.
Santosh Mohan Deb is the candidate from Silchar in Assam while Tariq Anwar has been fielded from Katihar and Thomas Hansda from Rajmahal (reserved) (both in Bihar).
Former Union minister Seilja is the candidate from Siram (reserved) constituency in Haryana. Madhavrao Scindia is the nominee from Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh.
In Maharashtra, A R Antulay will contest from Kolaba, Datta Meghe from Ramtek, Praful Patel from Bhandara, Shivraj Patil from Latur, Sharad Pawar from Baramati and Prithviraj Chavan from Karad.
In Orissa, Pinaki Mishra has been fielded from Puri, Mrityunjay Naik from Phulbani (reserved) and K P Singh Deo from Dhenakanal.
Former Union minister Sukhbans Kaur will contest from Gurdaspur and former external affairs minister R L Bhatia from Amritsar.
In Rajasthan, Rajesh Pilot will contest from Dausa, Girija Vyas from Udaipur and Ashok Gehlot from Jodhpur.
Jaiprakash Agarwal is the nominee from Chandni Chowk in Delhi while Meira Kumar will contest the poll from Karol Bagh (reserved).
Lok Sabha Speaker Purno A Sangma will contest from Tura in Meghalaya.
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