After procrastinating for so long, the Bharatiya Janata Party finally released its first list of candidates for the Upcoming Lok Sabha elections on Thursday. Precisely, 20 days before the first phase of election on April 11. The first list includes the big names from the BJP, including that of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Everybody was curious to know whether PM Modi will change the Lok Sabha constituency or retain the existing one. There were speculations that he might contest from Puri Lok Sabha seat. However, as it turns out, PM Modi will be contesting from Varanasi. The other big names include Rajnath Singh- who will contest from Lucknow, Nitin Gadkari will contest from Nagpur, Smriti Irani will go up against Rahul Gandhi in Amethi, VK Singh from Ghaziabad, Babul Supriyo from Asansol, Kiran Rijiju from Arunachal North.
The 185 candidate list covered 21 states and 3 union territories. Much of the candidate list did not throw a big surprise. Many MPs defected from other parties were given the ticket while many senior and influential leaders were retained. In the entire list of 185 candidates, the one Lok Sabha seat that stands out is from Gujarat. The BJP announced candidate from only one seat in Gujarat and that is Gandhinagar. For the seat that belonged to the BJP stalwart, the BJP picked its chief Amit Shah replacing LK Advani. Indeed, it wouldn’t have slipped from people’s sight.
Advani had become the undisputed choice of the BJP for Gandhi nagar seat, until yesterday. Now, Advani is out of the race and Amit Shah who will be contesting his maiden Lok Sabha election has taken the successor post.