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Fatmi denied RJD ticket, Madhubani set to see heavyweight rebels

After Cong’s Shakeel Ahmad, RJD’s Fatmi set to join fray as Independent . Fatmi posted this message from his Twitter handle while making an appeal to his supporters to remain present along with him on the occasion. 

lok sabha elections Updated: Apr 12, 2019 14:09 IST
Bishnu K Jha
Bishnu K Jha
Hindustan Times, Madhubani
MAA Fatmi,lok sabha elections,bihar elections
Mohamad Ashraf Ali Fatami(Santosh Kumar/HT)

Senior RJD leader Mohd Ali Ashraf Fatmi, who has represented Darbhanga Lok Sabha seat four times but has been denied a ticket this time, announced on Thursday he would file nomination for the Madhubani seat on April 18, the last date for filing of nominations for the fifth phase of Lok Sabha polls to be held on May 5.

Fatmi posted this message from his Twitter handle while making an appeal to his supporters to remain present along with him on the occasion.

Vikassheel Insaan Party (VIP), a constituent of the Grand Alliance in Bihar, has already announced Badri Kumar Purbe as its candidate for Madhubani, which was allotted to the party as part of the seat deal along with Khagaria and Muzaffarpur.

From the NDA side, BJP has already announced to field Ashok Yadav, the son of sitting MP Hukmdeo Narayan Yadav.

Senior Congress leader and former union minister Shakeel Ahmad has also fuelled speculation that he would contest from Madhubani. Ahmad’s close supporters have claimed he is likely to file nomination as an Independent on April 16.

Fatmi, also a former union minister, was hopeful of contesting from Madhubani as a VIP candidate and had dropped hints to this effect at a large meeting of supporters in Darbhanga on April 3.

However, the VIP decided to field Badri Purvey, considered an RJD import.

Interestingly, in 2015, Fatmi’s son Dr Faraz Fatmi was elected MLA from Keoti assembly segment in Darbhanga district, which is part of the Madhubani parliamentary seat. He had defeated BJP’s Ashok Yadav, who is now contesting from Madhubani as the NDA nominee.

A senior local leader of BJP and patron of Maa Janki Sena, Mrityunjay Jha, has also declared to contest as Independent from Madhubani.

Unlike Madhubani, Darbhanga seat has witnessed a smooth replacement of aspirants since Fatmi shifted focus to Madhubani in anticipation of seat swapping arrangement with RJD leader Abdul Bari Siddiqui, who currently represents Alinagar assembly seat in Darbhanga and has now been fielded by his party for Darbhanga Lok Sabha seat.

Sitting Darbhanga MP Kirti Azad, who quit BJP and joined Congress, has been fielded by the party from Dhanbad in Jharkhand.

Siddiqui is pitted against BJP’s Gopaljee Thakur, a former MLA from Benipur.

First Published: Apr 12, 2019 14:09 IST

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