Kanhaiya Kumar to Contest LS Polls from Bihar’s Begusarai

In Begusarai, Kumar will be pitted against the BJP’s Giriraj Singh.

2 min read
Kanhaiya Kumar

The CPI on Sunday, 24 March announced the candidature of former JNU students' union leader Kanhaiya Kumar from Begusarai Lok Sabha seat in Bihar, days after the left was ‘left’ out of the RJD-led Opposition alliance in the state.

The Communist Party of India (CPI), which was expecting to get the seat for Kumar as part of the 'mahagathbandhan' (grand alliance), has now decided to go alone.

"Kanhaiya Kumar will be our candidate from Begusarai seat. CPI(ML) has pledged their support to us too," senior CPI leader D Raja said.

Candidates for two more seats are yet to be finalised by the central leadership, he added.

As part of the seat-sharing pact of the 'mahagathbandhan', the Communist Party of India (Marxist–Leninist) Liberation (CPI-ML), the biggest Left party in Bihar, got one seat from the Rashtriya Janata Dal's (RJD) share of 20.

In a move that will plunge Kanhaiya into mainstream politics, he will be competing against BJP’s Giriraj Singh, while there are reports that the RJD might field Tanvir Hasan in order to get the muslim vote.

Kanhaiya and Tanvir are residents of Begusarai, while Giriraj is from Barahiya village in Lakhisarai district, Hindustan Times reported. Giriraj Singh is an influential upper caste Bhumihar leader and an Union minister who has been shifted from his Nawada seat.

The 'mahagathbandhan' is yet to announce its candidate. The NDA also announced its list of candidates for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls on Saturday, 23 March.

Kumar came into limelight after the 2016 Jawaharlal Nehru University sedition controversy. The student leader, accused of raising anti-India slogans on the varsity campus with nine others, has been charged with sedition by the Delhi Police.

(With inputs from PTI, Hindustan Times and NDTV)

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