The Congress central election committee (CEC) Thursday declared Thasra MLA Ramsinh Parmar as the candidate for the Panchmahal seat, following a controversy over Paranjaditya Parmar, son-in-law of AICC general secretary Digvijaya Singh, being picked for the same seat on March 18.
Though Paranjaditya’s name “sneaked” into the Congress candidate list, party sources claimed the team that drew the list was unaware of this. Party leaders said his name was announced for the Panchmahal seat, but withdrawn within “fifteen minutes”.
This, after objections were raised of there being “too many from one family in the Parliament”, sources said. Digvijaya was recently elected to the Rajya Sabha and his brother Lakshman Singh was also in the race for a Lok Sabha ticket.
Sources said Shankersinh Vaghela, who lost the Panchmahal seat in 2009, made way for Paranjaditya. Vaghela himself chose to contest from Sabarkantha seat, apparently to honour an “understanding” he had with the AICC general secretary, sources said. “I was already an MLA, but decided to contest the Lok Sabha polls only because I was asked to,” Vaghela said.
The panel of names sent for the Panchmahal seat by the party’s Gujarat unit had Balasinor MLA Mansinh Chauhan, Ramsinh and Paranjaditya on it. Sources said the CEC had finalised Chauhan’s name, pending announcement after Holi. “Somehow Paranjaditya’s name crept into the list but was withdrawn within 15 minutes,” said Gujarat PCC chief Arjun Modhwadia.
Meanwhile, Chauhan and Ramsinh threatened to resign over his candidature. Paranjaditya Parmar was unavailable for comment.