Congress releases first list

Congress releases first list

New Delhi: With just two days to go before the deadline for filing nominations, ruling Congress on Wednesday released first list of candidates for the 13 October assembly elections in Haryana and Maharashtra where it is fielding close relatives of senior party leaders in some key constituencies.

The party on Wednesday announced candidates for 68 of 90 constituencies in Haryana and 159 for the 288-member Maharashtra assembly. The Congress, which has been sharing power with its ally Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has announced that it would contest in 174 constituencies in Maharashtra leaving the rest to its partner.

While the Congress leadership is taking time to decide on many seats for which the senior party members have staked claim for their close relatives, it has cleared Rajendra Shekhawat, son of President Pratibha Patil, for the Amravati constituency. However, candidates are not announced for Latur, Sholapur from where Amit Deshmukh, son of Vilasrao Deshmukh and Praneti Shinde, daughter of union minister Sushil Kumar Shinde are aspirants . Chief minister and Ashok Chavan and most of his cabinet colleagues from the Congress have been re-nominated.

The last date for filing of nominations is on 25 September.

Among the candidates for Haryana, prominent are Savitri Jindal, widow of former state minister and steel baron O.P. Jindal (Hisar), chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda (Garhi Sampla Kiloi), state finance minister Birender Singh (Uchana Kalan) and forest and tourism minister Kiran Chaudhary (Tosham).