Rajasthan Polls: Does BJP Want Gehlot Vs Raje in Sardarpura? Union Minister Shekhawat Also in Consideration – News18

Last Updated: September 28, 2023, 19:56 IST

They said that Raje is ready to contest from Sardarpura, a seat held by Gehlot since 1998. (Photo: PTI file)

They said that Raje is ready to contest from Sardarpura, a seat held by Gehlot since 1998. (Photo: PTI file)

However, sources said Vasundhara Raje wants to contest from the Jhalrapatan seat but she is also ready to fight Ashok Gehlot from Sardarpura

Rajasthan Election 2023

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is planning to field Vasundhara Raje against Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot in Sardarpura seat in the upcoming state assembly elections, sources said on Thursday.

They said that Raje is ready to contest from Sardarpura, a seat held by Gehlot since 1998.

However, the BJP has kept Union Minister and Jodhpur MP Gajendra Shekhawat as its second option against Gehlot in Sardarpura.

But the former chief minister wants to contest from the Jhalrapatan seat. Raje has been representing the Jhalawar constituency in Rajasthan Assembly since 2003.

The BJP may also field two union ministers and four MPs against six Congress heavyweights. Rajsamand MP Diya Kumari may be pitted against Assembly Speaker CP Joshi in Nathdwara. Union Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP President JP Nadda communicated to these leaders to be ready for the big fight, sources said.

When Vasundhara Raje Met Gehlot

A photo of the meeting between Raje and Gehlot earlier this month created a buzz in political circles. However, Raje’s office later posted a picture in which Rajasthan Assembly Speaker Dr. CP Joshi and Leader of Opposition Rajendra Rathore apart from Raje and Gehlot.

Shah, Nadda Hold Discussions with BJP’s Rajasthan Leadership

Shah and Nadda arrived in Jaipur on a special plane on Wednesday evening and headed to the hotel near the airport for the core committee meeting.

According to BJP sources, cited by PTI, said that Shah and Nadda first held a meeting with former Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje for around 15 minutes. It was followed by a meeting with senior leaders in which the party’s election strategy was discussed. Feedback on the four ‘Parivartan Yatras’ that the BJP held recently was also discussed.

Union minister and the party’s election in-charge for Rajasthan Pralhad Joshi, co-in-charge Nitin Patel, BJP’s in-charge for Rajasthan Arun Singh, state unit president C P Joshi, Union Ministers Gajendra Singh, Arjun Meghwal, Kailash Chaudhary, leader of opposition in Assembly Rajendra Rathore, deputy leader of opposition Satish Poonia and other leaders were present at the meeting, the sources said.

The meeting continued for around three hours. Poonia and MP Rajyavardhan Rathore were the first to leave the venue after the first round. Nadda and Shah held the next round of meeting with the BJP’s national general secretary (organisation) B L Santosh, Union minister Pralhad Joshi, Nitin Patel, Arun Singh, Kuldeep Vishnoi and Vijaya Rahatkar, among others, the party sources said.

“The leaders held discussions on the assembly constituencies and brainstormed on ways to win the maximum number of seats in Mewar, Vagad, Shekhawati, Hadauti and Marwar regions and in eastern Rajasthan in the assembly and Lok Sabha elections,” a source said.

“During the meeting, a clear message was sent out that the party organisation is supreme and all have to work together to ensure victory of the party in the elections.”

Some leaders said that ticket distribution and other poll-related issues were discussed in the meeting. Sources in the BJP’s Rajasthan unit said Union Jal Shakti minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and Law Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal may be fielded in the assembly polls, along with some other MPs. However, the party leaders who came out of the hotel refrained from sharing details of the meeting with the media.

Convener of the election management committee Narayan Panchariya said the party’s authorised person will share details of the meeting with the media. There is speculation that senior RSS pracharak Prakash Chand may be given certain responsibilities in the upcoming Assembly election.

(With PTI inputs)