Congress releases first list of 21 candidates for Bihar elections - Hindustan Times
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Congress releases first list of 21 candidates for Bihar elections

Hindustan Times, New Delhi | ByAurangzeb Naqshbandi | Edited by Sohini Sarkar
Oct 07, 2020 11:17 PM IST

A Congress functionary said the party released the names of 21 candidates for the first phase a few hours before the close of the nominations to avoid strong reactions from ticket aspirants.

Wary of a potential backlash from ticket aspirants, the Congress delayed the release of its first list of candidates for the upcoming assembly elections in Bihar with Thursday being the last date of filing nominations for the first phase of polling on October 28.

The Congress list included seven Rajputs, four Bhumihars, four Dalits and two Brahmins. There is only one woman candidate in the first list.(HT PHOTO.)
The Congress list included seven Rajputs, four Bhumihars, four Dalits and two Brahmins. There is only one woman candidate in the first list.(HT PHOTO.)

The other political parties such as the ruling Janata Dal (United), Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) had already declared their candidates for the first phase.

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A Congress functionary said the party released the names of 21 candidates for the first phase a few hours before the close of the nominations to avoid strong reactions from ticket aspirants.

Among the candidates are Shubhanand Mukesh, son of Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Sadhanand Singh, who has decided not to contest this time, from the Kahalgaoon seat and former Bihar Youth Congress president Lallan Yadav from Sultanganj.

The party also fielded Akhauri Onkar Nath from Gaya Town instead of a powerful local leader, who is facing alleged charges of rape.

The Congress list included seven Rajputs, four Bhumihars, four Dalits and two Brahmins. There is only one woman candidate in the first list.

Seventy one constituencies in 16 districts will go to polls in the first phase. Most of these constituencies fall in Left Wing Extremist affected districts.

In the second phase on November 3, polling will be held in 94 constituencies while 78 seats will go to polls in the third and final phase on November 7. Votes will be counted on November 10.

The Congress is contesting on 21 seats in the first phase. The names were cleared by the party’s central election committee (CEC), headed by Congress president Sonia Gandhi, on Monday.

The functionary quoted above said the party candidates on these seats were individually informed about their selection and asked to submit their nomination papers.

“This was done to avoid any backlash from the aspirants who have been denied party nomination,” he added.

He further said the Congress had received 2700 applications on all the 243 seats but eventually had to accommodate only 70 contenders.

As per the seat-sharing deal finalised among the ‘mahagathbandhan’ or Grand Alliance constituents, the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) is contesting on 144 seats, the Congress on 70 and the left parties on 29.

On Monday, the CEC had discussed 46 names and on October 12, the panel will select the party candidates for the remaining two phases.

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