Bhopal seat row: Rajnath tries to placate Advani; Amit Shah may contest from Gandhinagar?



Zee Media Bureau

New Delhi: The suspense over the seats from where BJP veteran LK Advani and party’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi will contest continues on Wednesday.

The BJP’s Central Election Committee meet is currently underway to finalise the party’s next list of candidates for the Lok Sabha polls. But Advani, whose seat is not finalised yet, is not attending the crucial meet. According to reports, BJP president Rajnath Singh has telephoned Advani and urged him to attend the meet.

According to sources, Advani does not want to be fielded again from Gandhinagar Lok Sabha seat, while Modi could choose to contest from Vadodara seat. Advani is learnt to have informed Rajnath Singh about his preference for Bhopal, sources said.

The 86-year-old leader has argued that since most of the senior party leaders were giving their preferences of seats, he too should be allowed to make a choice.

Advani, who was the deputy prime minister in the NDA government, has said he has no problems in contesting from Gandhinagar as such but was keen on contesting from Bhopal as he considered it a safer seat, the sources said.

Madhya Pradesh Election Committee of the BJP reportedly wants Advani to contest from Bhopal. Amid the unease in his ties with Modi.

Meanwhile, given the predicament in the party over Advani’s seat, MP CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan called Rajnath as per reports. Reports are also doing the round that Modi’s close aide and former Gujarat home minister Amit Shah may contest from Gandhinagar.

The decision, however, has been left to the party.

Meanwhile, reports say Modi too had telephoned Advani this morning and urged him to contest from Gandhinagar seat. Modi’s candidature from Varanasi seat has already been declared by the party and a decision on his Gujarat seat is expected today.

The party is insisting that Advani should contest from Gandhinagar as his shifting of constituency will send “wrong signals”, the sources said.

Advani is not in the best of terms with Modi after he opposed Gujarat Chief Minister’s anointment as BJP’s PM candidate recently.

Meanwhile, sitting Bhopal MP and BJP veteran Kailash Joshi today said he is not keen on contesting from the seat and he had offered the seat to the BJP patriarch.

The BJP has so far declared 201 candidates and is likely to declare another 100 seats today after the CEC meeting.



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