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Nilesh Kumbhani comes out of hibernation, blames Congress

Updated: Apr 26th, 2024

Congress’ invalidated candidate on the Surat Lok Sabha seat, Nilesh Kumbhani, whose disqualification awarded BJP its first uncontested win in the election, has resurfaced after being unreachable for days.

A video of Kumbhani surfaced today, where he said that he was ‘forced to come back’ due to the protests outside his house. He revealed that he had not gone absconding and was in constant contact with the Movdi Mandal. “I talked with Babubhai Mangukiya and told my family that Congress is with us, and we need not fear,” he is heard saying in the video.

“With everyone’s cooperation, I went to Ahmedabad to file the petition, but Congress members protested against me at my home, forcing me to return,” stated the now ousted Congress leader.

Kumbhani also mentioned Pratap Dudhat, who had earlier lashed out at him over his disqualification, did not pick up his calls and wasn’t even present while filing during the nomination.

“When I had asked Dudhat to join me in rallies, he promised to accompany me when I file for the nomination. On his instructions, I chose a date to file the nomination after Amreli, but he stopped taking my calls.”

Referring to Dudhat, Kumbhani said, “The one who talks about killing me today, had he been there while filing for the nomination, the situation would have been different.”

Going after Congress leaders, Kumbhani stated that those protesting against him were involved with the BJP and weren’t there during the door-to-door campaigning.

“They have done this before as well. I was left alone, and had to do everything by myself,” said Kumbhani.

“No important names from Congress joined my rallies at the time of the campaign, too. The party had also asked for the booth details, and even with that no one came to help,” he said.

“In the previous Vidhan Sabha elections, the BJP had asked many (Congress) leaders to notch down their campaigns, and they had obliged,” accused Kumbhani.

Concluding his video, Kumbhani stated that he would not say anything that would hurt the Congress party.

“I was, and will always be a soldier of Congress,” he said, ending the video.

On Apr 20, Nilesh Kumbhani’s candidature for the Surat Lok Sabha constituency was cancelled when his supporters filed an affidavit stating their signatures on the nomination forms were forged. Following that, eight other candidates also pulled their nomination, serving BJP an uncontested first Lok Sabha victory on a platter.

Also read:

Congress suspends Nilesh Kumbhani over suspected BJP connections

Wanted posters for Nilesh Kumbhani surface in Surat