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BJP releases first list of 195 candidates, PM Modi to contest Lok Sabha Polls from Varanasi

New Delhi: Bharatiya Janata Party on Saturday released its first list of 195 candidates for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will contest Lok Sabha elections from Varanasi again.

Of 195 candidates, 34 are Ministers from Centre and States while two are former Chief Ministers who are in the list.

While announcing the first list, BJP National General Secretary Vinod Tawde said, "PM Modi to contest Lok Sabha elections from Varanasi, Union Minister for Law and Justice Kiran Rijiju to contest from Arunachal West, BJP MP Bishnu Pada Ray to contest from Andaman & Nicobar, BJP MP Tapir Gao to contest from Arunachal East, Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal to contest from Dibrugarh."

Home Minister Amit Shah will contest from Gandhinagar while Mansukh Mandaviya will contest from Porbandar.

"The names of 195 candidates have been finalised. The list includes 47 youth candidates, 28 women candidates, 27 Scheduled Caste (SC) candidates, 18 Scheduled Tribes (ST) candidates and 57 OBC/Backward Class candidates. The party has announced the list keeping all communities in focus," said BJP leader Vinod Tawde while addressing the media here in Delhi.

Union Minister Rajeev Chandrashekhar will contest from Kerala's Thiruvananthapuram.

Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal will contest from Dibrugarh, Kiren Rijiju from Arunachal Pradesh. Former External Affairs minister, late Sushma Swaraj's daughter Bansuri Swaraj has been fielded from New Delhi.

Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh to contest from Lucknow, Smriti Irani will again contest from Amethi.
Ajay Mishra Teni,MOS Home will again contest from Khiri.

BJP leader Alok Sharma to contest from Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh while former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan to contest from Vidisha.

Jyotiraditya Scindia, who joined BJP from Congress in 2020, to contest from Guna in Madhya Pradesh.

BJP announced Lok Sabha candidates for 5 Delhi seats as well.

BJP leader Manoj Tiwari will contest from North-East Delhi.

Late leader Sushma Swaraj's daughter Bansuri Swara will contest from New Delhi.

Kamaljeet Sehrawat will contest from West Delhi and Ramvir Singh Bidhuri from South Delhi. Praveen Khandelwal, Confederation of All India Traders chief, to contest from Delhi's Chandni Chowk.

Pragya Singh Thakur has been dropped.

The announcement of the candidate list follows a marathon meeting of the central election committee (CEC) of the BJP in the early hours of Friday.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP's National President JP Nadda, Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Organisation General Secretary BL Santosh, Chief Ministers, State Presidents, In-charges, Co-Incharges, and Election In-charges of various states were present in this meeting. Chief Ministers of Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, Assam, Uttarakhand, and Goa were present at the meeting.

Earlier in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, PM Modi secured a victory in Varanasi with 6,74,664 against Congress's Ajay Rai.

The BJP-led National Democratic (NDA) won a total of 303 seats, leaving the grand-old party behind at 52 seats.

The Lok Sabha polls are slated to be held in April-May this year.

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