Congress amends its first list

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In a bid to pacify the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS), who was not happy with the first list of candidates announced by the Congress, the main opposition party in Gujarat has revised the list by dropping four names.

The Congress and PAAS on Sunday said that they had reached an agreement on jobs and education quotas for Patels.

He said that party had announced its list by keeping NCP in the dark even after NCP supremo Sharad Pawar spoke with Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi.

He can't announce a pact in which the Patel or Patidar community does not seem to benefit. Police security has been beefed up at the Congress office in Ahmedabad. But soon after the release of the list, the agreement appeared to be unravelling as only two PAAS members found place on the list as against an expected eight or nine.

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Already the party's high-octave engagement with Hardik Patel has other groups that the Congress hopes to get support from - like backward castes (OBCs) and its traditional voters like Dalits and Adivasis - worked up at what they say is its disproportionate attention to the Patels.

"The Congress has declared candidate from one of the seats where we have a sitting MLA".

Mr. Hardik Patel, who was to officially announce the tie-up with the Congress in Rajkot, cancelled his rally.

Meanwhile, there is still uncertainty in the Congress camp as far as its understanding with alliance partners Hardik Patel's PAAS is concerned.

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Praful Patel said that "We had been in talks with Congress for a long time".

Punjab minister and former India batsman Navjot Singh Sidhu, who quit the BJP to join the Congress ahead of the Punjab elections, UP Congress chief Raj Babbar and actress- turned politician Nagma Morarji will add to the star value of the campaign line up.

Tuesday is the last day for filing of nominations in 89 constituencies falling in Saurashtra, Kutch and south Gujarat, two regions going to the polls in the first phase on December 9. Congress spokesperson Manish Doshi said that changes were made with the sentiments of local party workers and local political conditions in view.

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