JAIPUR: While the BJP has already published its first list of candidates for the 25 Lok Sabha seats in Rajasthan, it is faced with a conundrum with regard to putting out its second list. For some seats, the names of candidates have been withheld in the face of opposition and dissent from the party rank and file.
The party has been especially swamped by a tide of opposition even before they decide the candidates for Nagaur, Churu and Rajsamand constituencies. To come to a consensus on the choice of candidates, BJP national president Amit Shah has summoned senior leaders from Rajasthan to Delhi for a meeting after which the party is likely to name a few more candidates.
Party leaders from Nagaur met former CM Vasundhara Raje in Jaipur on Sunday, voicing their protest against sitting MP and Union minister CR Choudhary, who is seen as a contender for the ticket. Two prominent local Jat leaders were also among the protesters. Though the Nagaur constituency is dominated by Jats, the protesters were from a spectrum of communities, including Jats, Rajputs , Brahmins, Vaishyas and even Scheduled Castes.
Raje loyalist and former state transport minister Yunus khan, former industries minister Gajendra Singh Kheewsar and MLAs Harish Kumawat , Manohar Singh and Man Singh Kinaria led the protest against Choudhary.
The party is also undecided on handing a ticket to Jaipur Princess and Sawai Madhopur MLA Diya Kumari. She is known to have been seeking a ticket to contest either Jaipur or the Tonk Sawai Madhopur seat.
In a surprise omission in its first list, the BJP had decided against handing a fresh ticket to its only sitting woman MP from Rajasthan, Santosh Ahlawat. Now, word is that the party might veer to the Princess from Rajsamand to offset the anger in a section of cadres over the absence of Ahlawat from the list of candidates.
Raje lashes out at Cong over waiver
While she decided to keep herself out of the fray for the Lok Sabha polls, former Rajasthan CM Vasundhara Raje is leading the BJP’s campaign pitch in the state. Addressing a rally in Jaipur, Raje launched attacked the Congress, saying, “Congress came to power promising a complete loan waiver for farmers. However, it seems to have forgotten its pledge.”
Cong plans to induct independents
After scraping to the majority mark in the state elections, the Congress has decided to induct rebels who fought as Independent candidates and won. With the party eyeing a win in 20 of the 25 Lok Sabha seats in the state, it is planning to give tickets to some of its members of the state cabinet and induct some of these Independents in their place.