Indian-origin candidate withdraws from UKIP contest
Raheem Kassam, who made news last week for entering the race to be leader of the UK Independence Party (UKIP), withdrew his candidature on Monday after concluding he was unlikely to emerge victorious.
Kassam, 30 and the son of Indian immigrants from Tanzania, had the support of the UKIP’s biggest donor, but cited three reasons for withdrawing, including journalists showing up at his elderly parents’ home at dusk and allegedly intimidating them.
He also questioned the party's electoral process and doubted he would be able to collect enough funds to run the leadership campaign. However, he said he continued to believe in the causes espoused by UKIP, which has made major strides in British politics in recent years.
If elected, the former aide of Nigel Farage would have been the first Indian-origin leader of a frontline party in British politics.
Farage resigned as party leader after Britons voted to exit the European Union in a June 23 referendum, which was partly held as a result of the UKIP’s rise as it exploited growing anti-EU sentiment in the country. Diane James won the leadership election in September, but stepped down 18 days later.
Farage has returned as the interim party leader until a new chief is declared elected on November 28. The contest currently appeared to be between Paul Nuttal and Suzanne Evans.