The opposition congress on Friday released the first list of 43 candidates for the Gujarat Assembly elections, with Rajya Sabha MP Amee Yagnik from the Ghatlodia constituency, currently held by Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel.
Senior leader and former MLA party Arjun Modhwadia has been nominated from the Porbandar seat, which he lost to BJP’s Babu Bokhiriya in 2012 and 2017.
Ms Yagnik has been chosen to fight from Ahmedabad’s Ghatlodia seat, which is currently held by Chief Minister Patel.
Of the 43 seats for which the opposition party has applied, it currently holds only one seat, Jhalod (ST) in Dahod district.
Instead of the incumbent MLA Bhavesh Katara, the party has chosen Mitesh Garasiya from Jhalod. Mr. Garasiya was the Congress MLA in the previous 2012-17 term.
The first list of candidates includes seven women, including Ms. Yagnik. Some former MLAs also managed to get tickets this time.
The wife of Narendra Ravat, leader of the Vadodara Congress and leader of the opposition in BJP-ruled Vadodara Municipal Corporation, Amee Ravat, has been elected to the city’s Sayajigunj seat.
Former Congress MLA from Jasdan seat Bholabhai Gohel has once again got the party ticket. Mr Gohel had joined the BJP after being denied a ticket in 2017, but he returned to Congress in 2018.
Senior party leader and former BJP MLA from Bhavnagar’s Mahuva seat, Kanubhai Kalsariya, has been elected by Congress for the same seat. He contested the 2017 poll as an independent but lost to BJP’s Raghav Makwana by nearly 5,000 votes.
Former MLA Dhirubhai Bhil has been given a ticket for the Sankheda (ST) seat, which he lost to the BJP in 2017.
The first list has 10 Patel or Patidar faces, 11 tribals, 10 OBCs, and five SCs.
While the ruling BJP has not yet announced its candidates, the newcomer AAP has announced its candidates for 118 seats.
The list was released after the names of the candidates were determined at a meeting of the party’s Central Election Commission (CEC) chaired by congress chairman Mallikarjun Kharge here.
Former conference president Sonia Gandhi attended the meeting online, while the rest of the participants attended it physically at the AICC headquarters here.
Congress wants to oust the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) from government in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s home state, where the saffron party has been in power for more than two decades.
Elections for the 182-member Gujarat assembly will be held next month in two phases – on December 1 and 5 – while votes will be counted on December 8.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NewsMadura staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.)
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