Gujarat ex-CM & his deputy opt out of electoral race | Gujarat Election News

GANDHINAGAR: Former CM Vijay Rupani and three ex-ministers from his cabinet announced Wednesday that they won’t contest the December assembly polls in Gujarat, saying “others” should be given a chance. They dropped their decision amid speculation that senior BJP functionaries won’t be fielded this time, and on a day the party parliamentary board met in Delhi to finalise candidates for the elections.
Apart from Rupani, ex-deputy CM Nitin Patel and former senior ministers Bhupendrasinh Chudasama and Pradipsinh Jadeja said they would stay out of the race.
Rupani was CM from 2016 until his resignation in September 2021 that put Bhupendra Patel at the helm. He represents the prestigious Rajkot (west) seat from where Narendra Modi had won too.
Rupani said he wrote to the party leadership five days ago to not consider him for a poll ticket. “I worked as the CM for over five years and have been a party MP and MLA,” he said. “The party ought to consider another candidate as I have been entrusted with organisation work in other states.”
Six-time MLA Nitin Patel wrote to state BJP president CR Paatil Wednesday, saying he was not running in this election. “Since 1977, the party has given me an opportunity to serve the people in different capacities. Please do not consider my candidature,” he wrote and thanked PM Modi and party workers for their love and support.
In a complete overhaul last September, a year ahead of the state polls, the BJP high command had replaced the entire Rupani-led cabinet with a fresh team under Bhupendra Patel, a first-time MLA. This ‘no repeat’ political experiment was seen as an attempt by the leadership to shed the baggage of anti-incumbency the party could face for being in office for 27 years.
This theory received credence when the party assigned organisation work to Rupani. In the run-up to the polls, it was widely believed that the ex-ministers would not find favour as the high command is more likely to back new faces.
Chudasama, who had the education, panchayat, agriculture, and law and justice portfolios in the past, said he had communicated his desire not to contest to Union home minister Amit Shah a year ago. “I reiterated my intention at the recent parliamentary board meeting,” he said. “I have contested nine assembly elections and have been a minister for five terms. I am grateful to the party and will keep serving it.”
The Dholka MLA said he will do any duty assigned to him by the party. Former MoS home Jadeja, who has won four elections and served as a minister for 12 years, said: “I have written to the party high command stating that I should not be considered for any ticket,” he said.
Party sources said more functionaries such as Kaushik Patel and former state BJP president RC Faldu may have opted out too. They could not be reached for confirmation.
Some ex-ministers such as Saurabh Patel said they were unaware that their former colleagues were standing down. “In routine course, I have represented to be fielded as a candidate,” former energy minister Saurabh Patel said.

Source link

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *