Millennium Post

Set back to Congress as Shakeel Ahmad to contest as independent from Madhubani

New Delhi: In a major setback for the Mahagathbandhan in Bihar, senior Congress leader and former Union Minister Shakeel Ahmad has on Monday announced to file papers for Madhubani Lok Sabha seat as an independent candidate. Ahmad, who has represented Madhubani parliamentary constituency for two terms, has also resigned from AICC's spokesperson post.

Ahmad, who was unhappy after his traditional seat of Madhubani went to ally Vikassheel Insaan Party (VIP) under a seat-sharing formula of the Grand Alliance, has announced to file his nomination papers on Tuesday.

"I have demanded the support of the party. If the party high command does not extend support, I will contest as an Independent," Ahmad told the media at his residence in Madhubani.

Ahmad pointed out that a Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) supported candidate was contesting against Congress candidate Ranjit Ranjan in Supaul. "If RJD can support a candidate against an official Congress candidate, then why can't the Congress does the same in Madhubani?", he said, adding that Ranjan is the Congress sitting lawmaker from Supaul.

Ahmad said that the Grand Alliance candidate in Madhubani cannot defeat the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate Ashok Yadav, the son of BJP MP Hukumdeo Narayan Yadav, in Madhubani. VIP has fielded former RJD leader Badrinath Purve from the seat, where polling is on May 6.

"If I wouldn't contest from here, the fight would become one-sided. I have requested the party to give me the symbol or support from outside as if there can be a friendly fight on Chatra seat then why cannot it be in Madhubani?" he said, adding that in the seat-sharing, Chatra seat was allotted to Congress, but RJD has fielded its own candidate.

"Congress leaders and workers are with me. I will have to contest to defeat the BJP in Madhubani," he added.

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