The Congress on Thursday night announced its second list of 85 candidates for the Madhya Pradesh assembly polls and replaced three of its previously declared nominees.
With this, the Congress has declared all but one candidate for elections to the 230-member assembly scheduled for November 17.
The Congress had on Sunday released its first list of 144 candidates for the state.
The Congress replaced its candidate for the Datia assembly constituency, fielding Rajendra Bharti in place of Avadesh Nayak. He will contest against BJP candidate and Home Minister Narottam Mishra. Mr Bharti, a former MLA, had defeated Mr Mishra in the past but lost the last election by a slender margin.
Mr Nayak’s nomination from Datia drew opposition from a section of party workers and leaders, prompting the party leadership to replace him.
The Congress also replaced its candidate for the Pichhore assembly seat, where Arvind Singh Lodhi will be the party nominee in place of Shailendra Singh.
The party fielded Narmada Prasad Prajapati in place of Shekhar Chaudhary from the Gotegaon-SC assembly constituency.
The party fielded Ravinder Singh Tomar from the Dimani assembly seat and he will contest against Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar.
From the Gwalior assembly seat, considered the bastion of Union minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, the Congress has fielded Sunil Sharma, who had unsuccessfully contested in a bypoll against sitting MLA and minister Pradhuman Singh Tomar, a known Scindia loyalist. Pradhuman Singh Tomar had switched over to the BJP along with Scindia after the last assembly polls.
In the 2018 assembly polls, the Congress had won 114 seats, while the BJP got 109.
However, the Congress government fell after many MLAs under the leadership of Jyotiraditya Scindia, who later became a Union minister, joined the BJP.
The BJP returned to power in March 2020 with Shivraj Singh Chouhan as chief minister for a fresh term. The BJP’s current strength in the assembly is 127.
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