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Priya Dutt not to contest 2019 Lok Sabha elections

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Mumbai, Jan 7: Former Congress MP Priya Dutt on Monday announced that she will not contest the Lok Sabha elections 2019. Dutt has represented Mumbai North-Central constituency twice and was defeated by Bharatiya Janata Party(BJP) candidate Poonam Mahajan in 2014.

Photo credit: PTI

"To all those in the party who I have had disagreements with, I hope they understand it was never personal. I have only represented what was best for the party, the workers, and my constituents," she said in a statement.

"To all my constituents, please vote discerningly. While I am committed to working for the party and its candidate, I want to assure you that I will not support anyone my conscience does not permit me to," Dutt added.

"I have always been sincere with the people of my constituency, even at times when the truth has hurt me. I maintain that has worked for the people and for me," she said.

But she clarified her decision not to contest the elections is purely personal. "My boys are now 13 and 11 years old. I had missed so many special moments in their lives and want to be there for them more than ever before... every parent will understand why. These are crucial years for my boys. Life is changing for them, as it is for me, and it is important for them to have both their parents around. My husband has steadily supported me all these years and has sacrificed much of his life to adjust to mine. It was time for me to be together with and for them," Dutt said.

The younger daughter Sunil Dutt was first elected to the Lok Sabha in 2005 on a Congress ticket. She won from the same constituency in 2009, but lost to BJP's Poonam Mahajan in 2014.

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