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Lok Sabha polls 2019: CPI fields Kanhaiya Kumar from Bihar’s Begusarai to take on BJP’s Giriraj Singh

File photo: Kanhaiya Kumar. Photograph:( Zee News Network )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Mar 24, 2019, 04.38 PM (IST)

Former president of the Jawaharlal Nehru University Student Union (JNUSU) Kanhaiya Kumar will contest the 2019 Lok Sabha elections from Begusarai in Bihar.

The Communist Party of India announced Kanhaiya's candidature on Sunday.

Begusarai is also known as Leningrad of Bihar due to the influence of the CPI in the area.

A native of the Begusarai district, Kumar was arrested by the Delhi Police in February 2016 for his alleged involvement in JNU event where anti-India slogans were raised, a charge denied by him. His mother works as an Anganwadi worker while his father is a small farmer.

The former student leader was recently seen actively participating in state politics. Soon after his release from jail, Kumar had met chief minister Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad. He had also faced criticism then for touching Prasad’s feet.

Meanwhile, In a surprise move, BJP has fielded Union Minister Giriraj Singh from Begusarai who contested from Nawada Lok Sabha constituency in Bihar.

Earlier, it was expected that Shahnawaz Hussain will contest from Begusarai.

At present, the BJP represents Begusarai in the Lok Sabha. In 2014, party’s Bhola Singh won the seat by defeating RJD’s Tanveer Hasan by 58,000 votes.

Bihar will see polling in seven phases. The dates of polling in Bihar will be on April 11, 18, 23, 29 and May 6, 12 and 19. The counting of votes will take place on May 23. 

In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the RJD won only four seats and the Congress two. The JD-U, which contested separately, won two seats. The BJP-led NDA won 31 seats, with the former's tally being 22.

(With inputs from agencies)

Story highlights

Kanhaiya Kumar was arrested by the Delhi Police in February 2016 for his alleged involvement in JNU event where anti-India slogans were raised, a charge denied by him.