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AAP to contest in Inner and Outer seats

- Manipur unit of the party fields Khamchinpau Zou from Outer

Imphal, March 17: The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) will contest both the Lok Sabha seats in Manipur mainly on the issue of corruption.

The Manipur unit of the party today announced lawyer and social activist, Khamchinpau Zou, based in New Delhi, as its candidate in the Outer Manipur parliamentary constituency.

The party said it would announce the name of the candidate for the Inner seat very soon.

“The national campaign committee approved the candidature of Khamchinpau Zou as the party’s candidate in the Outer seat on Saturday night. We will also announce the candidate for the Inner seat soon,” the party’s Manipur campaign committee convener, Hareshwar Goshwami, said.

Zou, 48, practises law in New Delhi. He is also the president of All India Tribal Students’ Association, Delhi, adviser to the All Tribal Union, Manipur, and also the president of United Zou Tribe Organisation, New Delhi.

He hails from Kuki-dominated Churachandpur, the district from where sitting MP Thangso Baite hails.

Zou is entering the electoral fray for the first time.

With this, the number of candidates in the Outer has gone up to nine, including one Independent candidate.

Sitting MP Thongso Baite, who is seeking re-election, will face three candidates from his own district of Churachandpur.

The two other candidates are Kim Gangte, former MP and state president Trinamul Congress and Len Gangte of the Janata Dal (U).

However, the Congress is unfazed by the number of rival candidates from Churachandpur district.

Rahul Gandhi will address people from both the Outer and Inner constituencies during his election campaign meeting at Wangjing Kodompokpi ground in Thoubal district on March 19.

“We do not have to worry about retaining both the seats. We have enough MLAs to campaign for them,” senior party leader and former minister N. Biren Singh said.

The Congress has 42 members in a 60-member House.

AAP sources said three candidates, all former professionals, were seeking the party ticket for the Inner constituency.

The party, however, declined to disclose the names. “You will know our candidate for the Inner in the next couple of days,” the sources said.

“We will fight the election mainly on the issue of corruption. We are preparing a booklet, which will explain to the voters the objectives and agenda of the party. We will bring it out within this month,” Goshwami said.

Goshwami said the formation of district committees of the party was nearing completion and the election strategy would be finalised after a meeting of the party.