Senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh has taken up Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath's challenge to contest from the "toughest" seat in the national election next month. In a series of tweets on Monday, Digvijaya Singh said that he will fight from wherever Congress chief Rahul Gandhi asks him to. The two Congress veterans are believed to be locked in an ego clash since Kamal Nath took over as Chief Minister in December. Infighting in Madhya Pradesh may affect the party in the elections just weeks ahead, many leaders fear.
"To accept challenges is my habit. I won from Raghogarh despite the Janata Party wave in 1977. I am ready to contest the Lok Sabha elections from wherever my leader Rahul Gandhi ji says,'' Digvijaya Singh, a former chief minister, tweeted. He added that he was "grateful to Kamal Nath" for thinking that he is "competent enough to fight Lok Sabha elections," in a statement seen as a veiled dig.
Kamal Nath had on Saturday said if Digvijaya Singh wanted to contest the Lok Sabha polls, he should choose the "toughest seat" in the state. Without naming any seat, he had said that there were a few seats in the state that the Congress had not won in "30-35 years."
Bhopal, Indore, and Vidisha are three high-profile seats that the Congress has not won in over three decades. Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan has been winning the Indore seat since 1991. The last time Congress won in Indore was in 1984.
Sources say that Digvijaya Singh is looking to contest from the Rajgarh seat, which he had won in 1984 and 1991.
Madhya Pradesh sends 29 lawmakers to the Lok Sabha. In 2014, the BJP won 27, while the Congress won only two seats. This time, the party fancies its chances after wresting Madhya Pradesh from the BJP in the December state polls.
Elections in the state will be held in four rounds -- on April 29, May 6, 12 and 19. The two main parties in the state, Congress and BJP, are yet to announce their candidates in Madhya Pradesh.