New Delhi: Congress leaders P Chidambaram, Jairam Ramesh, Vivek Tankha and Imran Pratapgarhi filed their nomination papers Monday for the June 10 election to Rajya Sabha. However, there were voices of discontent emerging from Congress over the choice of candidates. Congress president Sonia Gandhi had Sunday night cleared the names of 10 party leaders including Ajay Maken, Randeep Surjewala and Mukul Wasnik.
Soon after the announcement of the candidates, actress-turned-politician Nagma Morarji and the party’s national spokesperson Pawan Khera voiced their disappointment at not being nominated.
Nagma also raised questions over the candidature of minority cell head Imran while Congress leader Acharya Pramod Krishnam said that suppression of talent is a ‘suicidal step’ for the Congress.
Sanyam Lodha, who is also an adviser to Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, said the Congress should re-reconsider its decision to field candidates to the Rajya Sabha from outside the state. “Shayad meri tapasya mein kuch kami reh gayi (Maybe my penance fell short),” Khera tweeted.
“My 18 years of penance fell short before Imran bhai (Imran Pratapgarhi, who has been fielded from Maharashtra). Sonia Ji our Congress president had personally committed to accommodating me in RS in 2003/04 when I joined Congress party on her behest we weren’t in power then. Since then it’s been 18 years (but) they didn’t find an opportunity, Mr Imran is accommodated in RS from Maha (Maharashtra). I ask am I less deserving, Nagma tweeted.
However, both Khera and Naga later congratulated the Congress nominees.
Imran, when asked about his candidature said, “There is no opposition to my candidature and the entire party stands united. The entire country comes within Maharashtra and there is no question of outsider or insider. There is no question of any kind of opposition to the decision of Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and the entire party stands together behind her decision. We will win the Rajya Sabha election.”
When asked about Nagma’s criticism, Imran said, “Have you seen another tweet by her congratulating everyone who has been nominated to the Rajya Sabha. Please see that tweet, it is more beautiful.”