Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan. (PTI/File)
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday announced its first list of 177 candidates for the Madhya Pradesh assembly elections. While Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan will contest from the Budhni seat, state ministers Narottam Mishra and Yashodhara Raje Scindia will fight from Datia and Shivpuri respectively.
The Congress also held a similar meeting on Thursday, but interestingly, it remained inconclusive after party leaders Digvijaya Singh and Jyotiraditya Scindia exchanged heated notes in the presence of party chief Rahul Gandhi over distribution of tickets, according to reports.
The party’s Central Election Committee (CEC) had held a meeting at its headquarters in New Delhi on Thursday to finalise the names of candidates.
The Congress also held a similar meeting on Thursday, but interestingly, it remained inconclusive after party leaders Digvijaya Singh and Jyotiraditya Scindia exchanged heated notes in the presence of party chief Rahul Gandhi over distribution of tickets, according to reports. The situation forced Rahul Gandhi to ask senior party leaders Ahmed Patel, M Veerappa Moily and Ashok Gehlot to sit with the "warring" leaders and resolve the differences.
However, it seems Shivraj Singh Chouhan is the only leader among the chief minister aspirants who will contest the polls. Although the Congress is yet to release its first list of candidates, if reports are to be believed, Kamal Nath and Jyotiraditya Scindia, both Lok Sabha MPs, are unlikely to contest the election. "So far, there is no chance of Scindia and Nath contesting Assembly polls," a Congress spokesperson told news agency PTI.
Nath, who is also the state Congress unit president, is a nine-time MP from Chhindwara, while the party's campaign committee chiefScindia represents Guna in the Lok Sabha.
Shivraj Singh Chouhan's Budhni connection
# Chouhan was first elected as MLA from Budhni in 1990 beforebecoming MP by winning a bypoll from the Vidisha Lok Sabhaseat in 1991 after former Prime Minister Atal Bihrai Vajpayeequit the seat.# He then went on win the Vidisha Lok Sabha seat in 1996, 1998,1999 and 2004.
# In 2005, Chouhan took over as Madhya Pradesh chief minister and in 2006 contested from Budhni to get elected to the Assembly. He beat the Congress' Rajkumar Patel, a former minister, by a margin of 36,000 votes.
# In 2008 and 2013 Assembly polls, Chouhan won from the seat again in the, defeating the Congress' Mahesh Singh Rajput and Mahendra Singh Chauhan by a margin of 41,000 votes and 84,000 votes respectively.
(With PTI inputs)