Prime Minister Narendra Modi is unlikely to contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections from Gujarat in spite of the demands from the BJP’s state unit, PTI quoted a party leader as saying.
The state BJP leader, on the condition of anonymity, told that since party president Amit Shah is contesting from Gandhinagar, chances of another national-level leader contesting from the state are very slim.
"I do not think that they will field two national leaders from one state. There is no chance of Modi fighting from a seat in Gujarat," the BJP leader said.
State BJP leaders have requested Modi to contest from Gujarat to boost party workers' morale, especially in the aftermath of the 2017 Assembly elections when the Congress managed to restrict the BJP to 99 seats, lowest in two decades, and increased its own tally by 16 seats to 77 in the 182-member Legislative Assembly.
Till Tuesday, rumours were doing rounds in BJP circles that Modi was going to contest from Surat, but party sources said it was not true. The party is yet to declare its candidate from Surat.
BJP's Ranjanben Dhananjay Bhatt, who won from Vadodara after Modi vacated it, is seeking re-election from the seat.
Earlier, there was speculation of PM Modi contesting from a second Lok Sabha seat in Odisha’s Puri. However, the buzz ended with the BJP announcing the name of its spokesperson Sambit Patra from the temple town.
Similarly, after the Sabarimala surge in Kerala, as the BJP was trying hard to make its presence felt in the state, there was buzz that Modi could be fielded from Pathanamthitta seat, but the party on Saturday fielded K Surendran from there.