Ticket to sitting MLAs, MPs may be denied, hints Rahul

Rajmeet Singh

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 10

At a recent meeting of the general secretaries, Congress president Rahul Gandhi hinted against giving ticket to Rajya Sabha MPs, sitting MLAs and their family members for the upcoming General Election.

This has, however, raised hopes of first-timers and those who were denied a ticket in the 2014 parliamentary and 2017 Assembly elections.

To ensure that politics remain in the family, sons of three Cabinet ministers, seven MLAs and sons of another three MLAs have already staked their claims for the party ticket in different constituencies of the state.

In the last Assembly elections, ‘one family, one ticket’ formula had put several aspiring senior party leaders out of the race. “The same yardstick doesn’t apply for the coming Lok Sabha elections,” said a senior Congress leader.

Sources in the party said to avoid “annoying” prominent leaders, the state unit would be forwarding the names to the AICC, if any exceptions were to be allowed by Rahul. With factors like no alternative candidate or winning probability of a given high-profile candidate, there can always be exceptions, said a senior leader.

Meanwhile, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) chief Sunil Jakhar said, “As the state Budget session is ending on February 21, the PPCC will try to send the names by February 25. It is for the party president and the Central Election Committee to take the final call on the candidates,” he added.

The PPCC has already held its meetings with the state leaders concerned for the 13 Lok Sabha seats. However, the state unit did not hold any meeting for the Patiala parliamentary seat, where Preneet Kaur, wife of Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh, is a potential candidate.

Kith and kin in race

  • Ministers: Rana Gurmeet Sodhi, son Anumit Hira Sodhi; Brahm Mohindra’s son Mohit Mohindra; Sadhu Singh Dharamsot’s son Gurdeep Dharamsot; and Charanjit Singh Channi’s brother Manmohan Singh
  • MLAs: Harpartap Ajnala; Kulbir Zira, his father Inderjit Zira; Sukhpal Bhullar’s father Gurchet Bhullar and brother Anoop Bhullar; Pawan Adia; Sushil Rinku; Rakesh Pandey; and Darshan Brar’s son Kamaljeet Brar