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Chaitra Navratri

Amid rift, Gujarat BJP rules out change of candidates


AHMEDABAD: Though the BJP faced dissidence over selection of candidates in at least six Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat, the saffron party has made it clear that no nominee from any of the 26 constituencies in the state will be replaced, party leaders said.

“Should you harbour any reservations against any candidate, set them aside and cast your vote for the BJP in the name of Prime Minister Modi,” Gujarat BJP president CR Patil said on Monday night while addressing a meeting in Surat. From Valsad to Sabarkantha, concerns have been raised by BJP members over the candidates fielded. The demand for replacement of candidates was louder in Sabarkantha, Junagadh, Amreli, and Valsad.

“Despite objections over candidates, such as Purushottam Rupala from Rajkot, Shobhana Baraiya from Sabarkantha and Dhaval Patel from Valsad, the BJP top leadership has said party candidates in all 26 Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat will be retained,” a party leader said, requesting anonymity.

Patil said, “Give one vote to whoever is the candidate of the BJP. Get a vote from your family and friends as well. If your buddy tells you that he doesn’t like the BJP candidate, convince him that you have to vote for Prime Minister Modi. If the candidate doesn’t work, let me know. I will say to Prime Minister Modi.”

Purushottam Rupala, the BJP candidate from Rajkot, miffed the Kshatriya community with his remarks, and the row escalated over the past week. The Kshatriya community are demanding that Rupala be replaced in Rajkot.

Addressing a a news conference on Tuesday, Patil said, “Kshatriya community should forgive Rajkot candidate Parsottam Rupala with a big heart. He has apologised three times. There is no need to replace Parsottam Rupala as a candidate.”

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, a BJP leader said, “No candidate in any constituency will be changed. If the BJP changes its candidates at this stage, it will give a signal to the public that the BJP’s position in Gujarat is not strong.”

Earlier, due to opposition from BJP workers on the Vadodara and Sabarkantha seats, both the candidates withdrew their candidature.

‘if not candidate, vote for Prime Minister Modi’

Gujarat BJP president CR Patil assured the party members and said that if there was any reservation against any candidate, then the party members must set them aside and cast their votes for the BJP in the name of Prime Minister Modi.


10 Days ago