Mixed 11: Latest BJP list combo of fresh recruits and imports | India News

NEW DELHI: Former Indian diplomat, Taranjit Singh Sandhu, 28th ambassador of India to US and ex-high Commissioner of India to Sri Lanka, has been nominated as BJP candidate from Amritsar seat as the party on Saturday released a list of 11 candidates for Lok Sabha polls which also had the name of Parliament veteran Bharastruhari Mahtab, a five-time MP from Cuttack in Odisha, who recently crossed over from BJD.
Another prominent name in the list dominated by fresh recruits and imports from other parties was that of Preneet Kaur, wife of ex-Punjab CM Amarinder Singh, who had won from Patiala for Congress and has been nominated for the same seat, while Sushil Kumar Rinku, sitting MP from Jalandhar who quit AAP this week, has been fielded from the same constituency.
Another new entrant and a prominent face in Parliament Ravneet Singh Bittu will contest the Lok Sabha polls from Ludhiana. Bittu had won the seat on Congress ticket in 2019 and had served as acting leader of the party in Lok Sabha for a while. North-West Delhi MP and a celebrated Sufi and playback singer Hans Raj Hans has been fielded from Faridkot (SC) seat, whereas Dinesh Singh Babbu is the party candidate from Gurdaspur, replacing Sunny Deol, an MP, who had “dubious distinction”of maximum absenteeism in the 17th Lok Sabha. He was unwilling to contest this time.
Babbu, a former deputy Speaker in Punjab state assembly, is a senior party leader from the state. It is after several terms that the party has fielded someone from a non-film background for the seat that was long represented by Vinod Khanna.
Former IPS officer Debashis Dhar, who resigned on March 20 citing “personal reason” and “social goals”, has been nominated as BJP candidate from Birbhum constituency in West Bengal. “I wanted to do something for people that’s why I became an IPS officer. However, after 2021, I could not work and was humiliated. My house was raided by West Bengal police. My mother, who has never seen such things, told me not to see her. I have not talked to my daughter for so long. I wanted to do something so that this system gets cleaned,” said Dhar.
Dhar, the ex-SP of Coochbehar, was suspended by Trinamool govt after 2021 West Bengal assembly elections.
With the latest names, BJP has so far announced its candidates for 411 seats. The saffron party has still not given any candidate for Diamond Harbour and Asansol seats in West Bengal.
Besides, candidates for several key constituencies in eastern UP are wait-listed that include neighbouring Ballia and Ghazipur. Sources said incumbent Ballia MP Virendra Singh “Mast” is set to be replaced whereas party is looking for a suitable candidate from Ghazipur, which was won by Afzal Ansari as BSP nominee in 2019 when Mayawati was in alliance with SP. The triangular contest has brightened prospects of the saffron candidates amid possibility of strong polarisation after the demise of don-politician Mukhtar Ansari.

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