Cong's Tiwari, Pawan Bansal, claim Chandigarh seat

Cong's Tiwari, Pawan Bansal, claim Chandigarh seat

Ex-union minister and Congress spokesperson Manish Tiwari. PTI file photo

The poll fever so far remains subdued, yet even before the Congress takes on its adversaries in this Le Corbusier designed capital city, the party will have to overcome the internal wrangling prompted by the entry of these top Congress leaders.

Ex-union minister and party spokesperson Manish Tiwari, former Railway minister Pawan Kumar Bansal and Navjot Kaur Sidhu, a former MLA and wife of Punjab cabinet minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, are throwing their weight around to bag the coveted seat.

Chandigarh is currently represented by incumbent BJP MP and actor Kirron Kher. Tiwari and Navjot Kaur Sidhu have formally applied for the Congress ticket with the Union Territory's Congress chief.

Bansal unhappy

The entry of the other two Congress leaders has not gone down well with Pawan Kumar Bansal, who has been traditionally the Congress candidate for the Chandigarh Lok Sabha seat. He is a four-time MP.

Bansal lost the last general election to Kher. Manish Tiwari has been an MP from Ludhiana in Punjab. He had declined to contest the last parliamentary polls citing health reasons. Tiwari, who has his roots in Chandigarh, having completed his degree in law from Panjab University, has been eyeing the seat for some time now. However, Bansal has been able to ebb all others when it comes to getting the high command to declare him the official nominee for the seat. Tiwari’s father was killed by militants while he was on a morning walk in the city in 1984.

Sidhu's wife

Navjot Kaur’s entry has surprised all. Her husband and Punjab cabinet minister Navjot Sidhu has managed to develop a good rapport with Congress president Rahul Gandhi. Kaur claims her merits will outdo the other two vying for the ticket. Both Tiwari and Kaur have started addressing gatherings hoping that the Congress will formalise their claim on the seat.

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