Mallikarjun Kharge May Opt Out of Lok Sabha Elections! Sources Suggest – Potential Candidacy for Son-in-law

Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge may abstain from contesting the upcoming Lok Sabha elections, as per reports emerging after the Monday meeting regarding the Congress’ second list. According to NDTV, Kharge desires to lead Congress’ election campaign and not engage actively in his personal electoral pursuits.

In the Congress Central Election Committee meeting held on March 7, Kharge’s name from Gulbarga, Karnataka, wasn’t finalized, although the party has yet to make an official announcement. Sources suggest that Kharge might endorse his son-in-law, Radhakrishna Doddamani, as the candidate following this meeting.

Mallikarjun Kharge has previously won the Gulbarga seat in the Lok Sabha elections of 2009 and 2014. In 2019, he faced defeat at the hands of BJP leader Umesh Jadhav. Consequently, Kharge has been a prominent figure as a Rajya Sabha member and an opposition leader. He still has about four years left in his term as a Rajya Sabha member.

Rahul Gandhi to Contest from Wayanad; Congress Announces Candidate List

In the first list of candidates, the Congress party has fielded 20 new contenders out of 39 for the upcoming elections. In 19 meetings, decisions were made to retain former candidates in their respective constituencies. Rahul Gandhi is set to contest the elections from the Wayanad constituency in Kerala for the second consecutive time. Meanwhile, Shashi Tharoor has secured the ticket from Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala for the fourth consecutive time.

In Chhattisgarh, the party has finalized candidates for 5 seats, while in Telangana, 6 former candidates have been given tickets. Congress has entrusted veterans like Bhupesh Baghel, Tamradhwaj Sahu, and K.C. Venugopal to represent the party in the electoral arena.

Analysis of Ticket Distribution in the First Candidate List

In the first candidate list, approximately 38% of the candidates belong to the general category, comprising only 15 contenders. Conversely, about 62% of the tickets have been allocated to candidates from SC/ST/OBC/Muslim categories, totaling 24 nominees. The Congress party has allotted tickets to women candidates at a rate of only 10%. 

Additionally, candidates below the age of 50 constitute approximately 31% of the total candidates selected for the elections. This distribution sheds light on the party’s approach to inclusivity and representation across various demographic categories in candidate selection.

Possibility of Vaibhav Gehlot Receiving a Ticket: Insights from Congress CEC Meeting

The second meeting of the Congress party’s Central Election Committee (CEC) was convened on March 11, attended by Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge, Sonia Gandhi, and other CEC members. Senior leaders from Rajasthan and Uttarakhand Congress were present at this meeting. According to party sources, there is a possibility that Ashok Gehlot’s son, Vaibhav Gehlot, may be considered for a ticket allocation.

Key Indicators from Congress’ Initial Candidate List: Test for Major Leaders in Hindi-Speaking States

The announcement of ticket distribution for 7 constituencies in Karnataka unveiled the inclusion of 6 new candidates in the electoral fray. Similarly, Chhattisgarh witnessed the declaration of ticket allocations for 6 constituencies, with 5 new contenders stepping into the arena. 

Notably, former Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh, Bhupesh Baghel, is also among the new entrants, contesting from Rajnandgaon. In Kerala, the Congress party seems to be refraining from experimentation in its candidate selection process.

BJP's First Candidate List

BJP’s First Candidate List – 195 Names, Including 34 Ministers: Modi from Varanasi, Shah from Gandhinagar

On March 2nd, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) unveiled the names of 195 candidates for the upcoming elections across 16 states and 2 union territories. Among them, 34 Central Ministers have been allotted tickets. 

The list comprises 28 women, 27 candidates from Scheduled Castes (SC), 18 from Scheduled Tribes (ST), and 57 from Other Backward Classes (OBC). Additionally, 47 candidates below the age of 50 have been nominated, reflecting the party’s emphasis on youth.

Niyati Rao

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