New Delhi: The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Gujarat has fielded Rivaba Jadeja, wife of Indian cricket all-rounder Ravindra Jadeja, from Jamnagar North assembly seat, and the sitting MLA from the seat Dharmendrasinh M. Jadeja has been denied ticket.
Apart from this, Patidar leader Hardik Patel, who left the Congress and joined the BJP, has also been made the party candidate from Viramgram.
In the first list of candidates released on Thursday, candidates have been declared for 160 assembly seats out of 182. There are a total of seven names in this list, who contested on Congress tickets in the last assembly elections.
The BJP has dropped a sitting MLA from Morbi assembly seat, which was recently in the news due to the bridge accident, and nominated former MLA Kantilal Amrutiya, who allegedly jumped into the river to save people’s lives at the time of the accident.
Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel has been fielded by the party from Ghatlodia assembly seat.
The BJP, which has been in power in Gujarat for the last 27 years, has not fielded many of its senior leaders, including former chief minister Vijay Rupani. It has been said that some of these senior leaders, including Rupani, have refused to contest the elections on their own.
Among the candidates contesting for the first time is Rivaba Jadeja, who joined the BJP in 2019. Rivaba is a mechanical engineer, and a relative of Congress veteran Hari Singh Solanki. She was married to cricketer Ravindra Jadeja in the year 2016.
There are seven candidates who joined the BJP from the Congress, who contested the 2017 assembly elections on a Congress ticket. These include Pradyuman Jadeja and Ashwin Kotwal. Former Gujarat Congress working president Hardik Patel could not contest the elections in 2017 as he was below 25 years of age at that time.
In Gujarat, 89 seats will go to polls in the first phase on December 1 and in the second phase on December 5, 93 seats will go to polls. The counting of votes will take place on December 8.
The first list of candidates was released on Thursday morning after a meeting of the party’s election committee chaired by BJP national president Jagat Prakash Nadda on Wednesday. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh were also present in the meeting.