Gujarat polls: BJP releases 3rd list of candidates

RSTV Bureau

FILE: Prime Minister Narendra Modi with part  president Amit Shah. Photo - PTI

BJP released its third list of candidates for the Gujarat Assembly polls on Monday. In the third list that comprises of 28 names, the party has dropped as many as 16 sitting MLAs, including three ministers, and given tickets to 10 legislators.

Former minister Saurabh Patel has been fielded from Botad and former state party chief RC Faldu will be contesting from Jamnagar-South seat.

The ministers who have been dropped are Jayanti Kavadia (the MLA from Dhrangadhra seat in Surendranagar), Vallabh Vaghasia (Savarkundla seat in Amreli) and Nanu Vanani (Katargam seat in Surat city). Kavadia had recently announced that wanted to work to strengthen the party instead of contesting.

The parliamentary secretary in Chief Minister Vijay Rupani’s government, Jetha Solanki, the legislator from Kodinar (SC) seat, was also dropped.

Solanki resigned as the MLA and from all party posts two days ago, alleging that Dalits faced atrocities under the BJP-led state government.

Sitting MLA from the Jamnagar-South seat, Vasuben Trivedi, who was the women and child development minister when Anandiben Patel was the chief minister from 2014 to 2016, has
also been dropped by the BJP this time.

The Gujarat Assembly speaker and BJP’s Dalit face in the state, Ramanbhai Vora, who represents Idar (SC) seat of Sabarkantha, has been picked to contest from Dasada (SC) seat of Surendranagar, as the sitting MLA, Punambhai Makwana, has been denied a ticket.

The state’s former finance minister, Saurabh Patel, who was dropped as a minister from Rupani’s cabinet last year, has been fielded from Botad. And sitting MLA TD Maniya was dropped.

Last week, the BJP had declared its candidates for 106 seats. With today’s addition of 28, the party has so far announced its nominees for 134 out of the total 182 seats in the Gujarat Assembly.

The polling for the two-phase elections in the state will take place on December 9 and 14 and votes will be counted on December 18.

(With inputs from PTI)