BHOPAL: Former Union minister Arun Yadav, who was being seen as the front-runner from the Congress for the upcoming by-election to Khandwa Lok Sabha seat in Madhya Pradesh, has said he will not contest the poll due to family reasons.

Yadav, the former state Congress chief, informed about his decision in a tweet on Sunday night.

Earlier, Congress leaders hinted that Yadav was most likely to be fielded from the Khandwa Lok Sabha seat, which fell vacant following the death of sitting BJP MP Nandkumar Singh Chauhan.

Senior state Congress MLA and former minister Sajjan Singh Verma had termed Yadav as the best candidate for the Khandwa LS seat and said, “Our high command too feels so.”

However, Yadav in a tweet on Sunday said, “After meeting Kamal Nath (state Congress president) and Mukul Wasnik (AICC general secretary in-charge of MP) personally in Delhi today (Sunday), I have conveyed to the party in writing about not being able to contest from the Khandwa parliamentary seat due to family reasons. I will fully cooperate and support the party’s official candidate.”

Meanwhile, sources in the BJP said Harshvardhan Chauhan, the son of Nandkumar Singh Chauhan, was the front-runner for the party’s ticket for the Khandwa Lok Sabha seat, and added that the name of former state minister Archana Chitnis was also doing the rounds.

Bypolls to the Khandwa Lok Sabha constituency and three state Assembly seats – Jobat (ST), Prithvipur and Raigaon (SC) – are scheduled on October 30 and counting of votes will take place on November 2.