Sat. May 25th, 2024

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The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday named Karan Bhushan Singh as its Lok Sabha candidate from Uttar Pradesh’s Kaiserganj in place of his father and six-time lawmaker Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, who faces sexual harassment charges, and state minister Dinesh Pratap Singh as its nominee from Gandhi family bastion of Rae Bareli.

Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh headed the Wrestling Federation of India for 12 years. (HT PHOTO)
Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh headed the Wrestling Federation of India for 12 years. (HT PHOTO)

Brij Bhushan Sharan Singh, who headed the Wrestling Federation of India (WFI) for 12 years, was charged under Indian Penal Code (IPC)’s Sections 354 (assault or criminal force with intent to outrage modesty), 354A ( Sexual harassment) and 354D (stalking) last year. Top wrestlers accused him of sexual harassment and camped at Jantar Mantar for 38 days demanding his immediate arrest.

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The nomination of Dinesh Pratap Singh, who defected to the BJP from Congress, was announced even as confusion persisted over the Congress candidates from the Gandhi family pocket boroughs of Amethi and Rae Bareli. Friday is the last day for the nomination for these seats.

Congress leader Jairam Ramesh on Wednesday said that the party’s central election committee has empowered party chief Mallikarjun Kharge to finalise the candidates for Amethi and Rae Bareli.

Some Congress strategists are believed to have suggested Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s nomination from Amethi. Rahul Gandhi represented Amethi between 2004 and 2019. The strategists have recommended Rahul Gandhi’s candidature from Rae Bareli. Sonia Gandhi, who has moved to the Rajya Sabha, retained the Rae Bareli seat in 2019.

HT on Thursday reported Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi expressed some initial reluctance to contest and instead wanted to focus on campaigning in the ongoing general elections. Kharge was believed to have been trying to convince them.

Both Amethi and Rae Bareli go to the polls on May 20. In Amethi, the BJP has renominated Union minister Smriti Irani, who defeated Rahul Gandhi by 55,000 votes in 2019. Rae Bareli is the only seat the Congress won in 2019 in Uttar Pradesh.

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