Ex-Akali leaders feature in Congress third list for Punjab

New Delhi: The Congress party on Thursday announced its third list of 23 candidates, including a few former Akali leaders, for the Punjab assembly elections, as suspense over cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu joining the party continued.

The Congress did not announce the candidate for Amritsar (East) seat in the third list, from where Sidhu is likely to contest, replacing his wife Navjot Kaur Sidhu.

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The Congress has so far released names of its 100 candidates and is yet to announce the names of remaining 17 candidates for the 117 assembly seats, for the February 4 polls.

Sitting MLA Rajwinder Kaur Bhagikay from Nihal Singh Wala (SC), who quit the Shiromani Akali Dal in November last year features in the list. Kamaljit Singh Karwal, ex-Akali leader who recently joined the Congress, has been chosen to fight from Atam Nagar. Another ex-Akali leader to find his name in the list is Pritam Singh Kotbhai from BuchoMandi (SC).

Deepinder Singh Dhillon (Dera Bassi) is also among the new entrants to the Congress to have been chosen to contest on the party ticket. He was expelled the by SAD last year.

Another notable name in the list is of sitting Congress MLA Rakesh Pandey from Ludhiana North.

The third list was released by Congress General Secretary Madhusudan Mistry.