Amid the feverish speculation about octogenarian BJP leader L K Advani giving up his traditional Gandhinagar seat in Gujarat to contest the forthcoming Lok Sabha polls from Bhopal, it has now emerged that there is no truth in it and that the veteran politico will indeed seek re-election from his sitting seat.
A senior BJP leader told Express that BJP district chief Alok Sharma, 46, is the most likely candidate for the Bhopal seat. “Kailash Joshi, 85, who is the sitting MP, will not be nominated because of his old age. The party wants to present a young face for the state capital and Sharma’s candidature is almost final,” he said. According to him, MP Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan had recommended the name of Sharma, a long-time friend of his and a former city corporator. He had contested the 2008 Assembly elections, albeit unsuccessfully, from Bhopal(North).
Regarding the earlier talk in party circles about Advani’s political migration from Gandhinagar, the BJP leader said, “These are all media speculation. Neither Advani , Sushma Swaraj nor Sadhna Singh (wife of Chouhan) are in the running for Bhopal(seat).”
Also, the BJP in its quest for ‘mission 29’ (winning all the 29 Parliamentary seats in Madhya Pradesh), has decided not to give renomination to some five sitting MPs.The seats, which are likely to see new faces, include Khajuraho, Satna, Sidhi, Tikamgarh and Bhopal.
“To say that we will be able to win all the 29 seats in the state will be mere wishful thinking. However, we are confident of winning at least 25. To achieve this, tickets will not be given to some of the sitting MPs,” he added.
Meanwhile, business tycoon Sunny Gaur, who is managing director of Jaypee group(Jaiprakash Associates Limited), is likely to be fielded from Rewa or Sidhi. Gaur was in the news after a local court had issued a non-bailable warrant(NBW) against him in 2012 over his alleged involvement in a murder case. The BJP presently has 13 Lok Sabha members from the state. It had won 16 seats in the 2009 elections. The party’s list of LS candidates in MP is likely to be announced in the last week of March.