The BJP on Thursday released it's first list of 184 candidates for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls 2019 after the party’s Central Election Committee meeting over the past couple of weeks. While PM Modi will once be contesting from his bastion Varanasi, BJP chief Amit Shah is all set to make his Lok Sabha debut in 2019 polls from the Gandhinagar constituency in Gujarat.
Currently, a Rajya Sabha member, Amit Shah had electoral success in a number of Gujarat assembly elections, being an MLA for almost two decades till 2017 when he became an MP.
The BJP chief contesting from Gujarat's Gandhinagar seat indicates that the party's senior statesman LK Advani will not be contesting in 2019, thereby ending his almost 2-decade-long run as Gandhinagar's MLA.
LK Advani, tantamount to being one of the BJP's founding fathers, is the current Member of Parliament from Gandhinagar, and has been the MP from the constituency for the last five terms.
The BJP has fielded a massive 21 sitting ministers in its first list, as well as party chief Amit Shah. Meanwhile, besides PM Modi and Amit Shah, other top BJP leaders whose names were announced were Smriti Irani who is set to give contest to Congress chief Rahul Gandhi from Amethi constituency and Union Minister Rajnath Singh, who will contest from Lucknow.
Two other veterans in politics, Union Minister Sushma Swaraj and Uma Bharti, hav previously announced to not contest the elections in 2019 citing health concerns.
General elections will be held for 543 Lok Sabha seats in seven phases starting from April 11, the result of which will be released on May 23 with the counting of votes to take place on the same day. Gujarat is set to go into polls in a single phase for the 26 Lok Sabha seats on April 23.