MUMBAI: The Congress on Wednesday declared 21 nominees in Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra including the Nagpur parliamentary constituency from where senior BJP leader Nitin Gadkari will be contesting. All India Congress Committee general secretary Mukul Wasnik issued the list that includes 16 nominees in Uttar Pradesh and five in Maharashtra. This is the second list of Congress nominees for Uttar Pradesh.
The Congress has decided to field Nana Patole, former BJP MP who quit the party in 2018 protesting against Prime Minister Narendra Modi's style of functioning, against Gadkari from the Nagpur constituency. As expected, the Congress has nominated senior leader and former Maharashtra chief minister Sushil Kumar Shinde from Solapur where he suffered a shock defeat in 2014.
Former MP and union minister of state Milind Deora, who has not been on good terms with Mumbai Congress president Sanjay Nirupam, gets nomination from Mumbai South constituency which he had won in 2009. Former MP Priya Dutt, who initially refused to contest but came back into reckoning in the last few days, gets the party ticket from Mumbai North Central where she would take on sitting BJP MP Poonam Mahajan.
For the tribal dominated and Scheduled Tribes (ST) reserved constituency of Gadchiroli-Chimur which is in Eastern Maharashtra, the Congress has fielded Namdev Usendi.
In its second list for Uttar Pradesh, some of the prominent names that were fielded include former union minister Sriprakash Jaiswal, state president Raj Babbar, former BJP MP recently inducted Savitri Phule and young face Lalitesh Tripathi among others.
Last week, Congress party had released its first list of 15 candidates for upcoming Lok Sabha elections. Both party president Rahul Gandhi and former party chief Sonia Gandhi were in the list and are continuing to contest from Amethi and Rae Bareli seats, respectively, in Uttar Pradesh.
With this, Congress has announced Lok Sabha candidates from Maharashtra, Gujarat and most from Uttar Pradesh.