Britain's first Muslim minister loses seat

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Indy Politics

He was Britain's first Muslim minister but yesterday Shahid Malik became one of the highest-profile victims of Labour's electoral failure. Elected in 2005 to represent Dewsbury in Yorkshire, Mr Malik stepped down as Justice minister last year over allegations that he had breached the Ministerial Code. He was reinstated as Communities minister but has now lost his seat.

Vera Baird, elected in Redcar in 2001, and Solicitor General since 2008, lost her seat to Liberal Democrat Ian Swales, with a swing of 21.8 per cent, one of the highest of the election. Her constituency, in Labour heartland Teesside, has suffered 1,600 job losses after the mothballing of the Corus steelworks. Claire Ward, Justice minister and MP for Watford, was one of the youngest of "Blair's Babes" when she was elected in 1997, aged 24. But she has lost her seat – a target for both the Liberal Democrats and the Tories – to Conservative Richard Harrington by 1,425 votes.

Armed Forces minister Bill Rammell was unseated in Harlow by Conservative Robert Halfon, former chief of staff to Oliver Letwin, who had previously lost out by just 97 votes to Mr Rammell in 2005.