All India Congress Committee (AICC) is likely to release the first list of its candidates for Rajasthan assembly election by the end of this month. The first list will probably contain 70-80 names on ‘safe’ seats from where sitting MLAs, former ministers, MPs, and senior party functionaries have claimed candidature. These seats are where candidature is clear without any dispute mainly claimed by senior leaders including sitting MLA, former MPS and ministers,” confirmed a senior party official.
Election screening committee in the state headed by Kumari Selja had recently held two meetings with senior leaders of the PEC in Jaipur regarding finalizing of candidates. After having taken the feedback of Pradesh Election Committee (PEC) headed by PCC chief Sachin Pilot on candidate selection work of the panel is in its final stages and being wrapped up in New Delhi. The PEC has already authorized party president Rahul Gandhi to finalize candidatures. Beside this, AICC secretaries in-charge based on the survey have also drafted a report on the panel of candidature.
According to sources, although the decision over ticket distribution on all the seats has been done, the party is going to release lists phase by phase. “The first list is expected to be released by the end of this month”, the source revealed.
The sources have also revealed that the first list will be followed by two more lists. “The second list will be released by November 12 when the election commission will issue gazette notification of the election and the final list will be released not more than two days before the final day of nominations on November 19. The last list will be containing ‘disputed’ seats which have many candidates due to their proximity with the senior leaders who are lobbying for them aggressively. It happens in each election that candidature on such seats are ‘reserved’ till the last moment, i.e final day of notification so that the rebels get no time to file nomination as an independent,” as explained by a senior party official.
The Congress party this time has mainly focused only on the winnability factor to select candidates. Other factors taken into account are caste structure and fielding young candidates. Nearly 33 percent of candidates are likely to be below 50 years of age, while 15-20 percent seats may go to female candidates. The aspirants who lost two elections in row with a margin over 20,000 votes and the leaders who crossed 70 years may be sidelined.