New Delhi, Feb 16: Medha Patkar, Anjali Damania, Yogendra Yadav, Meera Sanyal and Kumar Vishwas are among 20 people who feature in the first list of the Aam Aadmi Party’s candidates for the Lok Sabha elections announced here Sunday.
The announcement took place barely two days after AAP founder leader Arvind Kejriwal resigned as chief minister of Delhi after his party’s efforts to pass the Jan Lokpal bill were stalled in the assembly.
“Today we have announced the names of 20 candidates. The selection of all these candidates has been done on the basis of their work for the society,” AAP leader Manish Sisodia said at a press conference here.
The over a year-old AAP had made a stunning debut in last year’s Delhi assembly elections, bagging 28 seats. It went on to form the government that lasted 49 days.
Social activist Medha Patkar will contest from Mumbai Northeast constituency while former banker Meera Sanyal will fight the electoral battle from Mumbai South, which is currently represented by Milind Deora of the Congress. From Mumbai Northwest, Mayank Gandhi will be the party candidate.
Anjali Damania will contest from Nagpur constituency, a stronghold of former BJP president Nitin Gadkari.
Sisodia said: “While choosing the candidates, we have tried to prevent corrupt and people with criminal charges from entering politics.”
AAP leader Yogendra Yadav will contest from Gurgaon in Haryana while poet-turned-politician Kumar Vishwas will be fielded from Uttar Pradesh’s Amethi constituency, which is a Congress stronghold and currently represented by its vice president Rahul Gandhi.
AAP leader Sanjay Singh also announced that Yogendra Yadav will be in charge of the party’s efforts for Haryana’s assembly polls, which are scheduled later this year.
In the first list, over a dozen candidates are to fight from constituencies that are currently represented by the Congress. Only one BJP-held constituency figures in the list.
The AAP’s first list of Lok Sabha candidates includes party spokesperson and former journalist Ashutosh, who will contest from Chandni Chowk, a constituency currently represented by Law Minister Kapil Sibal. Another journalist, Jarnail Singh, who hurled a shoe at then home minister P. Chidambaram, will be in the fray from west Delhi.
Mukul Tripathi will fight from Uttar Pradesh’s Farukkhabad constituency that is represented by External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid.
Baba Hardev Singh, a former Uttar Pradesh state civil service officer, is being fielded from Mainpuri in Uttar Pradesh. The constituency is represented by Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh.
Khalid Parwez, a social activist, is to contest from Moradabad constituency, which Congress MP and former cricketer Mohammad Azharuddin represents.
Lawyer H.S. Phoolka will contest from Ludhiana, the constituency of Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari.
Subhash Ware will fight from Pune, which is represented by Suresh Kalmadi.
Ashutosh told IANS that every challenge was big and he believes the party will do well in general elections.
“I take it as a challenge and we will get success as we got in Delhi. I have not planned what would be my strategy but will think about it,” he said.
The decision on the candidates was taken after a meeting of the party’s political affairs committee (PAC) earlier Sunday morning.
Party sources said many names, including that of Arvind Kejriwal, were discussed at the PAC meeting.