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Congress infighting over poll tickets intensifies

An intense turf war has broken out in Cong. With no consensus on 40 seats, rival camps of CM and DPCC chief are trying hard for their nominees, reports Amitabh Shukla.

india Updated: Nov 08, 2003 12:42 IST

An intense turf war has broken out in the Congress over the distribution of tickets. There’s no consensus at 40-odd seats, and rival camps of Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and DPCC chief Chaudhary Prem Singh have pulled out all stops trying to push their nominees through. At the instance of the Congress high command, the party screening committee met on Friday evening to sort out differences.

Party sources told the Hindustan Times the worst disputes were at Badli and Karawal Nagar where as many as four hopefuls were in the fray. Other contentious seats included Timarpur, Model Town, Moti Nagar and Yamuna Vihar, for each of which there were three candidates, and Palam, Saket, Najafgarh, Nangloi and Kamla Nagar, where two hopefuls were slugging it out.

Besides Prem Singh and Dikshit, Sajjan Kumar and Jagdish Tytler have been jockeying for maximum control over their spheres of influence: Outer Delhi and Delhi Sadar respectively. Apparently, both are banking on Prem Singh’s backing. The Congress high command is believed to have asked for a fresh survey of prospects in eight particularly contentious constituencies.

Allegations of unprecedented sums of money changing hands are also flying. Apparently several senior leaders are involved.

Prem Singh denied the infighting and allegations. “We are working as a team. All allegations are bogus,” he said. The list was getting delayed because of Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh preoccupations.

First Published: Nov 08, 2003 12:34 IST