Scam-tainted Suresh Kalmadi was denied ticket by Congress which fielded young leader Vishwajeet Kadam in his place as it released the third list of 58 candidates for the Lok Sabha polls naming several Union ministers and senior leaders.
Former Team India captain Mohd Azharuddin, who is a sitting member from Moradabad in Uttar Pradesh, was shifted to Tonk-Sawai Madhopur in Rajasthan having substantial minority population.
Former Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Ajit Jogi has been brought from Mahasamund while Paranjayaditya Sinh Parmar, son-in-law of Congress General Secretary Digvijay Singh, has been made a nominee from Panchmahal’s seat in Gujarat.
The party kept up the suspense as to whom it would field against Narendra Modi in Varanasi with Congress General Secretary Madhusudan Mistri indicating a surprise announcement while party spokesman Randeep Surjewala saying a “formidable” nominee will be fielded against BJP’s PM candidate.
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PCC chiefs renominated include Pratap Singh Bajwa from Gurdaspur in Punjab, Sachin Pilot from Ajmer and Ashok Tanwar from Sirsa in Haryana. Another General Secretary C P Joshi has been shifted from Bhilwara to Jaipur rural. Two Maharashtra ministers Sanjay Deotale and Rajendra Gavit have been fielded from Chandrapur in Vidarbha region and Palghar in Konkan region.
Five sitting members of Delhi were renominated — Union ministers Kapil Sibal (Chandni Chowk) and Krishna Tirath (North West Delhi), Sandeep Dikshit (East Delhi), Jai Prakash Agarwal (North East Delhi) and Congress General Secretary Ajay Maken from New Delhi.
With today’s list, the total candidates declared by Congress come to 318. One candidate has been replaced with Pankan Aggarwal brought in from Muzaffarnagar in place of Suraj S Verma.