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Senior Congress leaders? kin get prized tickets

The list includes names of the sons of leaders like Naval Kishore Sharma, Assembly Speaker PR Maderna, Chandan Mal Baid and Natwar Singh, reports KS Tomar.

india Updated: Nov 08, 2003 16:41 IST
KS Tomar

Congress Party's Central Election Committee (CEC) has cleared over 100 candidates which include the sons of senior leaders like Naval Kishore Sharma (Brij Kishore Sharma), Speaker of the State Assembly Paras Ram Maderna (Mahipal Maderna ), Chandan Mal Baid (Chander Shekhar Baid), Natwar Singh (Jagat Singh) and Shish Ram Ola (Rajendra Ola).

Senior leaders confirmed that Brij Kishore Sharma will contest from Jaipur rural while Mahipal Maderna will be fielded at Bhopalgarh, Chandar Mal Baid at Taranagar, Jagat Singh at Laxmangarh and Rajendra Ola will contest from Jhunjhunu.

With sons taking over the reins, retirement of father Maderna and Baid from active politics seems to be imminent in light of their ill health.

On the other hand, other senior leaders including Nawal Kishore Sharma, Shish Ram Ola and Natwar Singh are likely to play important roles in the organisation.

According to sources, 13-member CEC after the preliminary round of discussion in morning, reached to the consensus on over 100 names in the evening.

Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and State Congress President Girija Vyas attended the Central Election Committee meeting, which would again meet tomorrow to finalise rest of the candidates.

Sources said that senior leaders were enraged over the attitude of Gehlot who, in a bid to protect the interest of his loyalists, has allegedly tried to deny the tickets to his detractors.

Sources said that senior leaders from Rajasthan had lodged their protest to All India Congress Committee president Sonia Gandhi through Girija Vyas. Gandhi, on Thursday, had asked the screening committee led by Man Mohan Singh to review the single name-panels.

It is learnt that factionalism has badly hit the process of ticket distribution, which might not be in the interest of the party, desperate to retain the power in the State.

Sources said the party high command might give due weightage to the reports of election observers, which suggest alternate names in those constituencies where a few ministers and MLAs have become controversial.

Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot is imparting an impression that he was not in favour of denying tickets to a sizeable number of sitting MLAs as it result into bickering, spoiling the chances of official nominees.

Gehlot’s detractors in the party, however, are putting pressure on the party high command to deny tickets to corrupt ministers and MLAs.

First Published: Nov 08, 2003 16:41 IST