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Naz Shah on her 'pain' at suing Labour, visiting her mum in prison and how police saved her from a forced marriage

Some paths into politics are remarkable but latest Acting Prime Minister Naz Shah's is truly extraordinary.

The future Labour MP's father left home when she was six before her mother was jailed for killing her abusive partner, leaving Naz to bring up her younger siblings.

She later became victim herself to physical abusive at the hands of her cousin - who her wider family had forced her to wed in Pakistan at 15 - and only got out of the marriage after police found her tied up at home.

So it's no surprise the current shadow minister for women and equalities would forego a picture above the Downing Street desk in favour of an inspiring quote about "perseverance".

Shah worked as a carer and NHS commissioner before becoming the chair of a mental health charity, then rose to national attention in 2012 by defeating George Galloway in the Bradford West by-election.

Speaking to ITV News Political Correspondent Paul Brand in Westminster, she recounts her remarkable life before politics, vividly describing the day she left her mother in prison for the first time and that day police arrived to find her bound by her then-husband.

Naz Shah spoke to Paul Brand in her office in Westminster. Credit: ITV News

The 46-year-old explains how she has remained optimistic despite such shocking experiences but also, as a now mother-of-three, continued to battle her own "demons" and mental health issues.

Naz looked back on her life at an emotional time, personally and politically, having announced plans just days earlier to take legal action against her own party over the selection of Salma Yaqoob as a candidate in the race to be West Midlands Mayor.

She tells Brand of the meeting she has had with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn over the controversial shortlisting of Ms Yaqoob, the former Respect Party leader who lost to her as an independent candidate in a bitter campaign for Bradford West in 2017.

Naz Shah said she's been hurt by the ongoing dispute with her party.

And she admitted she feels pain to take action against the party after raising her concerns about the selection.

"It saddens me that I've had to ... I've tried to resolve these issues, I've tried to have conversations about them, they haven't been resolved," she told Brand.

"It's not an easy thing to be putting out how I felt during the 2017 election and having to relive it," she added, after addressing her concerns publically on social media.

"So when I walked in the house yesterday and I put my Twitter thread out I wasn't in a good place. I'm really pleased that my kids are on half time and they didn't have to experience me, where I was last night."

Watch above or listen to the full Acting Prime Minister episode to also hear:

  • The creature comforts she'd bring to the Number 10 flat
  • How she fights the "open secret" of clan politics in Bradford
  • The "toxic" campaign for re-election in 2017
  • Her response to past criticism of her social media postings
  • Why her staunch faith doesn't contradict her values on LGBT rights
  • The former world leader who is her "big crush"
  • What she would look to get out of a meal with Boris Johnson

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Acting Prime Minister offers politicians and public figures the keys to power then asks: 'What would you do now?' Credit: ITV News