Releasing its second list of candidates for the 2014 general election, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) declared its first candidate from Junagadh Lok Sabha seat in Gujarat today.
"Atul Shekhda (46) a farmer from Junagadh will contest against BJP's charge-sheeted MP Dinu Bogha Solanki, an accused in RTI activist Amit Jethwa's murder," AAP spokesperson announced.
However, it is not sure if the BJP will give a ticket to Solanki since the party has not announced who would contest from Junagadh.
Yesterday, Dinu Solanki was released from Sabaramati Central Jail after the Supreme Court granted him bail in the Jethwa murder case.
Atul Shekhda's father, late Govind Shekhda, was also elected as an MP from the Junagadh Lok Sabha constituency in the Janta Dal government.
"I have learned the basics of politics from my father who used to believe in the politics of principles and ethics," AAP's first candidate from Gujarat Atul Shekhda told PTI.
"After my father left politics due to illness, I also tried to join active politics but could not do so, as no party believes in pro-people politics," Shekhda said.
"When Anna started his movement for Jan Lokpal Bill, I joined it. Later, I supported Arvind Kejriwal's movement," he said.
"When Kejriwal announced the formation of the Aam Aadmi Party, I also registered myself as the party's member without thinking twice," he said.
On his association with the farmers' movement, Shekhda said, "I have been raising my voice for farmers who have been deprived of their land due to biased state policies," he said speaking about his active participation in the farmers' movement against Special Investment Regions (SIR) in Gujarat.
"Farmers are not happy with the present government.
They do not even get minimum support price for their crops. When we asked for our rights, the state and central governments simply pass the buck," he said.
"We will contest elections with power of the masses against candidates who fight election with money and muscle power," he said.
"For corruption-free politics, AAP has decided to nominate an honest candidate, since we want to end the influence of manpower and money power," AAP spokesperson Harshil Nayak said.