General elections 2019 for the 243-member Lok Sabha are currently on. A cursory look at key contests and contestants is quite in order. Here we take a glance at the men and women vying for a niche in the corridors of power in some prominent constituencies across the country.
Dhubri: All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) has fielded sitting MP Badruddin Ajmal against Abu Taher Bepari of Congress and Zabed Islam of Asom Gana Parishad. AIUDF had three MPs in the 2014-2019 Lok Sabha. It has again fielded Radheyshyam Biswas, sitting MP from Karimganj. However, it has dropped Sirajuddin Ajmal and instead fielded Hafiz Rafiqul Islam from Barpeta.
Patna Sahib: Film actor Shatrughan Singh who quit BJP but had won the seat for it twice before is the Congress candidate. He is pitted against Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad of the BJP. Congress is in alliance with RJD headed by Laloo Prasad Yadav’s family with Jitan Ram Manjhi’s party HUM. They are together called Mahagatbandhan.
Darbhanga: Abdul Bari Siddiqui of RJD is pitted against Gopal Jee Thakur of the BJP and Md. Mukhtar of the BSP. Sitting MP and former cricketer Kirti Azad of the BJP quit the part and joined the Congress. Ashraf Ali Fatmi of the RJD was denied the RJD ticket. Siddiqui has been elected MLA for six times. He was a leading figure in the 1970s agitation in Bihar.
Madhepura: Sharad Yadav of RJD vs. Independent candidate Pappu Yadav vs. Dinesh Yadav of JDU. Pappu Yadav is the sitting MP who won the seat in 2014 on RJD ticket. Sharad won this seat in 1991 and 1996. Pappu was suspended from the RJD.
North-east Delhi: Three term Congress CM Sheila Dixit will contest from this constituency.
South Delhi: Congress has put up boxer and Olympic bronze medallist Vijendra Singh from this prestigious constituency.
East Delhi: Cricketer Gautam Gambhir is BJP candidate from here will face Arvinder Singh Lovely of Congress.
New Delhi: Veteran Congress leader fight for New Delhi seat against BJP’s Meenakshi Lekhi.
North-west Delhi: Hans Raj Hans is the BJP candidate vs. Congress’ Rajesh Lilothia. Sitting MP Udit Raj, outspoken Dalit leader,who was ignored by the BJP, quit the party.
Gandhinagar: BJP National President Amit Shah vs. C. J. Chavda of Congress. Chavda is sitting MLA. Sitting MP is L. K. Advani.
Bharuch: Mansukhbhai Vasava of BJP vs. Sherkhan Abdulshakur Pathan of the Congress.
Mandya: Nikhil Kumaraswamy, grandson of former PM and son of Karnataka CM Kumaraswamy is pitted against film actress and independent candidate Sumalatha, wife of late actor and Congress minister Ambareesh. She was keen to get Congress ticket. But under the Congress-JDS alliance, the seat went to JDS.
Hassan: Prajawal, grandson of former PM H. D. Devegowda of JDS (Supported by Congress) vs. A. Manju of BJP. In 2014, Devegowda trounced A. Manju who was then in Congress by a margin of more than one lakh votes.
Tumkur: JDS patron and former PM H. D. Devegowda vs. BJP’s G. S. Basavaraj, four time MP from the constituency. In 2014, the seat was won by Congress’s S. P. Muddahanumegowda.
Ballari: Veteran Congress leader V. S. Ugrappa, sitting MP is pitted against Y. Devedrappa of BJP. Ugrappa wrested the seat in a byelection in 2017 from the BJP.
Shimoga: Madhu Bangarappa of JDS (in alliance with Congress) faces B. Y. Raghavendra of BJP. Madhu is son of later CM Bangarappa and Raghavendra is son of former CM and BJP leader Yeddyurappa. Currently Raghavendra is the sitting MP. Of the eight Assembly seats under the LS seat, seven are held by the BJP.
Kalburgi (formerly Gulbarga): Veteran Congress leader and Opposition leader in Lok Sabha Mallikarjuna Kharge vs. Umesh Jadhav, who was congress MLA from one of the segments in the constituency. He resigned and jumped into the fray. Kharge has so far won Assembly seat for nine times and MP seat twice.
Chikkaballapur: Former CM, M. Veerappa Moily of Congress is facing B. N. Bacche Gowda of the BJP. Moily had won during the last two elections.
JAMMU and KASHMIR
Anantnag: Mehbooba Mufti of PDP vs. G. A. Mir of Congress vs. Hasnain Masoodi of national Conference. Only about 13% people cast their votes.
Begusarai: JNU firebrand student leader Kanhaiya Kumar of CPI vs. Giriraj Singh of BJP vs. Tanveer Hasan of RJD. Sitting MP is Bhola Singh fo BJP.
Bhopal: Former CM Digvijay Singh of Congress vs. Thakur Pragya Singh of BJP, key accused in Malegaon blast case and currently on bail.
Guna-Shivpuri: Sitting Congress MP Jyotirditya Scindia is pitted against BJP’s
Akola: Prakash Ambedkar, grandson of Dr. B. R. Ambedkar vs. Sanjay S. Dhotre of BJP vs. Hidayatulla B. Patil of Congress. Prakash won this seat in 1998 and 1999 LS elections. Dhotre currently represents the seat.
Nanded: MPCC President Ashok Chavan vs. Pratap Patil Chikalkar of BJP.
Solapur: Veteran Congress leader Susheel Kumar Shinde vs. Mahaswami J. Siddeshwar Shivacharya of the PBP. Even Prakash Ambedkar is contesting from here besides Akola.
Baramati: Supriya Sule, daughter of NCP chief Sharad Pawar vs. Kanchan Kul of BJP.
South Mumbai: Industrialist Milind Deora of Congress vs. Arvind Sawant of Shiv Sena and cardiologist Dr. Anilkumar of Vanchit Bahujana Aghadi (VBA) which is a combination of several Dalit organizations.
Ahmednagar: Sangram Jagtap of NCP vs. Dr. Sujay Vikhe-Patil of the BJP. Vikhe-Patil is from the Political family associated with Congress while Jagtap is NCP MLA from Ahmednagar. His father is NCP MLC and father-in law is BJP MLA from Rahuri.
Sundergarh: Joel Oram, Union Tribal Affairs Minister vs. Sunita Biswal of BJD vs. George Tirkey of Congress. This was the only seat the BJP could win and BJD lost in 2014.
Amritsar: Hardeep Puri, only turbaned Sikh Minister in the Union Cabinet vs. siting Congress MP Gurjit Singh auja. Puri is a also a former diplomat.
Ferozepur: Sukhbir Singh Badal, former Deputy CM of Punjab is Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) candidate who will face Sher Singh Ghubaya of SAD. SAD and BJP are in alliance in Punjab. SAD has won this seat five times in a row. Sitting MP of SAD Sher Singh Ghubaya joined the Congress on March 5.
Gurdaspur: Film actor Sunny Deol, son of legendary film actor Dharmender is the BJP candidates. He joined the party on April 23 and was nominated the same day. This seat was earlier represented by another film actor Vinod Khanna in the past.
Bathinda: Harsimrat Kaur Badal, wife of Sukhbir Singh Badal is SAD candidate facing Amarinder Raja Warring of Congress and Talwandi Sabo of AAP. Warring and Saboo are members of Punjab Assembly.
Khadoor Sahib: Bibi Pramjit Kaur Khalra is a candidate of Punjabi Ekta Party. SAD (Taksali) is supporting her against SAD and Congress candidates. Her husband Jaswant Singh Khalra, noted human rights activist, was killed by Punjab Police in a fake encounter in 2000. Since then she has been fighting for justice. A park in Fresno City Council in Central California has been renamed to honour Jawwant Khalra.
Jodhpur: Vaibhav Gehlot, son of Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot vs. Gajendra Shekhawat, Union Minister. Ashok Gehlot represented this seat for five terms beginning from 1980.
Dausa: Jaskaur Meena of the BJP vs. Savita Meena of Congress.
Sivaganga: Karti Chidambaram, son of former Finance Minister Chidambaram has been fielded by Congress which is in alliance with the DMK. He is being opposed by H. Raja of BJP which is in alliance with the AIADMK. TTV Dhinakaran’s party AMMK has also put up a candidate,
Chennai Central: Dayanidhi Maran, former Union Telecom Minister and grand-nephew of Karunanidhi is DMK candidate. He is pitted against PMK’s Sam Paul. PMK is part of alliance headed by AIADMK. Kamala Haasan’s party Makkal Needhi Maiyam has put up Kameela Nasser. Maran lost in 2014 but had won from here in 2004 and 2009.
Coimbatore: P. R. Natarajan of CPI(M) is pitted against C. P. Radhakrishna of BJP. Two communist parties are in alliance with DMK and Congress. Radhakrishnan was elected from here in 1998 and 1999. In 2014, P. Nagarajan of AIADMK.
Chennai South: Jayavardan of AIADMK vs. Kalanidhi Veeraswamy, son of former Minister Arcot Veeraswamy of DMK.
Karur: Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker M. Thambidurai of AIADMK is pitted against youth leader of the Congress Jothi Mani.
Nainital: Former CM Harish Rawat of Congress vs. BJP’s Ajay Bhatt vs. Navneet Agrawal of BSP. Sitting MP is Bhagat Singh Koshiyari of the BJP.
Haridwar: Former CM Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank is BJP candidate and is pitted against Ambrish Kumar of the Congress.
Mainpuri: SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav vs. BJP’s Premsingh Shakya. Mulayam Singh Yadav has represented the seat four times. In 2014, he trounced BJP candidate S. S. Chauhan by a margin of 4.5 lakh votes.
Lucknow: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh (BJP) is seeking second term from the Lucknow seat. He is pitted against Poonam Sinha of SP. Sinha is wife of actor Shatrughan Sinha who is also fighting election from Patna Sahib in Bihar. Congress has fielded Acharya Pramod Krishnan from this constituency. In 2014, he defeated Congress’ Rita Bahuguna Joshi who later joined BJP.
Rampur: SP leader Azam Khan vs. film actress Jaya Prada of the BJP vs. Sanjay Kapoor of the Congress. Jaya Prada recently joined the BJP. She was earlier with SP and TDP of Chandrababu Naidu. In 2014, the seat was won by Dr. Nepal Singh of BJP who trounced Naseer Ahmed Khan of SP. In 2004 and 2009, Jaya Prada was elected from here. Both times she was with SP.
Mathura: Film actress Hema Malini of the BJP who is sitting MP is pitted against Mahesh Pathak of the Congress and SP-BSP-RLD combine’s Kunwar Narendra Singh. In 2014, she defeated RLD candidate Jayant Choudhury by a margin of three lakh votes.
Gorakhpur: Ravi Kishan, Bhojpuri film star has been fielded by the BJP vs. Ram Bhual Nishad of SP which has alliance with BSP and RLD. This seat was won by current UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath four times. But since was appointed CM after Assembly election, he resigned. In the ensuing byelection, SP nominee Praveen Nishad was elected.
Basirhat: Tollywood actress Nusrat Jahan, is the Trinamool Congress Party (TMC) candidate from this Muslim dominated constituency. She is pitted against Pallab Sengupta of CPI and BJP’s Sayantan Basu. Idris Ali of TMC won this seat in 2014 against CPI’s Nurul Huda.
Baharampur: Sitting MP Adhir Ranjan chowdhury of Congress is facing Apurba Sarkar of TMC, Eid Mohammed of RSP and Krishna Juardar Arya of the BJP. Adhir has won the seat four times.
Malda North: Mausam Benazir Noor of TMC vs. Khagen Murmu of BJP vs. Isha Khan of Congress. Both are party deserters. Noor won the seat in 2014 on Congress ticket while Murmu was with CPI(M). Noor and Isha Khan are cousins. Noor and Khan come from veteran Congress leader A. B. A. Ghanikhan Chowdhury’s family who represented this constituency several times and passé away in 2006.
Malda South: Abu Hasem of Congress vs. Dr. Moazzem Hossain of TMC vs. Sreerupa Mitra Choudhary of the BJP. The Left Front has not fielded any candidate and it seems like they are supporting the Congress. Mitra quit the TMC in 2015. Abu Hassem is Ghanikha Choudhury’s brother and had his early years in Toronto, Canada.