The Janata Dal (United) candidates’ list for the upcoming Assembly elections in Bihar does not include the name of ex-Director General of Police Gupteshwar Pandey, who took voluntary retirement to join the party.
Pandey, who was involved in the investigation into the death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput, had courted controversy over his sexist remarks about actor Rhea Chakraborty, a key accused in the case. Rajput was found dead in his Mumbai flat on June 14.
In a Facebook post, Pandey asked his supporters not to be disheartened, while confirming that he will not be contesting the polls. He said that he had struggled all his life and would continue to dedicate himself to working for the people of Bihar.
An unidentified senior BJP functionary told the Hindustan Times that the party was reluctant to give a ticket to Pandey. “The Opposition, outside Bihar has already started targeting the ruling party for doing petty politics by using the former DGP,” the functionary said.
Pandey desired to contest the polls from the Buxar constituency, according to the Hindustan Times. However, during seat-sharing talks, the constituency went to the Bharatiya Janata Party, Janata Dal (United)’s alliance partner.
The BJP released its first list of 27 candidates for the first phase of elections on Tuesday. It left two seats – Buxar and Brahampur – vacant. It also named a candidate for the Shahpur seat, an adjoining constituency seen as an alternative seat for Pandey. And the BJP later gave the Buxar seat to the Vikassheel Insaan Party, which joined the National Democratic Alliance on Wednesday.
A Janata Dal (United) leader said that Pandey can now hope to get nominated for bye-polls to the Valmikinagar Lok Sabha constituency.
The elections are scheduled to begin on October 28, and the results announced on November 10. As many as 65 bye-elections will be held along with the polls.
The BJP’s first list includes international shooter Shreyasi Singh and former MP Hari Manjhi. Singh had joined the BJP on Sunday. She will contest from Jamui constituency while Manjhi will fight from Bodhgaya. Other prominent names on the list are Raghvendra Pratap Singh from Barhara, Ramnarayan Mandal from Banka and Brij Kishor Bind from Chainpur constituency.