After much political hullabaloo, the Haryana Janhit Congress (HJC) president Kuldep Bishnoi has officially shut doors on the veteran Congressman Venod Sharma’s efforts of joining the National Democratic Alliance (NDA).
On Tuesday afternoon, Bishnoi announced at Hisar that former deputy chief minister and his elder brother Chander Mohan would be fielded from Karnal parliamentary segment.
On March 15, Hindustan Times had first reported that HJC had chosen to ignore Sharma and his proposed candidature from Karnal.
Mohan, who had represented Kalka assembly segment four times in a row, had mired into the controversy after he went missing in 2008.
He reemerged in December 2008 to announce announced his conversion into Islam as Chand Mohammad.
At that time Mohan was already married with two children.
Mohan had embraced other religion to marry Anuradha Bali alias Fiza, the ex-additional advocate general of Haryana government.
He was also disowned by the Bhajan Lal clan and ostracized from the Bishnoi community.
Following an uproar, the chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda dropped Mohan as his deputy.
Even since the controversy, Mohan was maintaining a low-key position in the public.
Few months later, he separated from Fiza and was readmitted in his Bishnoi cult.
Fiza was found dead under mysterious circumstances at her SAS Nagar house.
Initially, the HJC had announced to induct the Congress legislator from Ambala City Venod Sharma but the senior Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) leader Sushma Swaraj strongly opposed the move.
Sources said that Sharma, whose son Manu Sharma was convicted in the infamous Jessica Lal case, in which role of the veteran Congress leader was also under scanner, was the main reason behind BJP objection.
Bishnoi had publically resented the BJP’s move as direct “interference in the HJC working”.
But sources said that Chander Mohan and his family members had vehemently rejected Bishnoi’s efforts to welcome Sharma into the party fold.
Close aides of Bishnoi said that bowing to the family pressure and feedback against Venod Sharma and probable candidates including a prominent exporter from Panipat Avinash Paliwal and the four-time legislator and Rajput leader Jai Singh Rana were shelved to pave way for the family member.
Chander Mohan’s father and his younger brother had floated HJC in December 2007 but Mohan preferred to remain deputy CM and did not leave the Congress.
When he was ignored by the Congress in the 2009 assembly elections, Mohan joined the HJC in June 2012.