Congress bat­tles prob­lem of too many can­di­dates vy­ing for tick­ets

Hindustan Times ST (Jaipur) - - Rajasthan - Press Trust of In­dia let­ters@hin­dus­tan­

Congress is bat­tling a prob­lem of plenty with too many claimants vy­ing for party tick­ets in the up­com­ing as­sem­bly election in Ra­jasthan, its lead­ers said.

Though the fac­tion-rid­den unit in Ra­jasthan has man­aged to put up a united face by bring­ing two heavy­weights — for­mer chief min­is­ter Ashok Gehlot and state Congress chief Sachin Pi­lot — to­gether, it is still try­ing to deal with the squab­bling over tick­ets.

Elec­tions to the 200-mem­ber Ra­jasthan As­sem­bly will be held on De­cem­ber 7. Party chief Rahul Gandhi as­serted at a rally in Jaipur on Au­gust 11 that no out­sider will get a ticket for the as­sem­bly election.

“I can guar­an­tee you this time that not a sin­gle para­chute can­di­date will be able to get the ticket. If any such can­di­date comes, I will cut the rope,” Gandhi told party work­ers.

The party’s state election com­mit­tee has put the ball in Gandhi’s court for a fi­nal de­ci­sion on distri­bu­tion of tick­ets.

Congress lead­ers claimed a de­ci­sion at the lo­cal level on the can­di­dates can back­fire at a time when the party has man­aged to cre­ate some po­lit­i­cal buzz in the desert state, which usu­ally votes the BJP and the Congress al­ter­nately to power.

Leav­ing the de­ci­sion on ticket distri­bu­tion to the Congress “high com­mand” is a safe bet, they said. And added that let­ting the party’s na­tional gen­eral sec­re­tary Gehlot or state unit chief Pi­lot, an­other Gandhi aide, could re­sult in fac­tion­al­ism.

Gehlot, in his ‘Sankalp Rally’ speeches, had urged Congress work­ers and lead­ers to sup­port the can­di­dates who are picked.

He said only one per­son can get a Congress ticket from a seat and all party men should help that can­di­date win.

Ku­mari Selja, who was ap­pointed chair­per­son of the party’s screen­ing com­mit­tee for the election in Ra­jasthan in June, has said only “winnable” can­di­dates will get the tick­ets.

She said a fi­nal de­ci­sion has to be taken at the level of the Congress pres­i­dent but the feed­back col­lected from state will be con­sid­ered.


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