New Delhi: After unsuccessfully pushing the name of former Gujarat chief minister Anandiben Patel as a presidential candidate, BJP Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy now wants her to be named as the chief ministerial candidate for the coming elections in the state.
However, unlike Himachal Pradesh where the BJP is likley to go without a chief ministerial face, the BJP has already declared that it will go to polls under chief minister Vijay Rupani’s leadership in Gujarat. While Himachal polls are likely in November, elections in Gujarat may take place in December.
“Former CM Anandiben’s popularity in Gujarat is rising very fast. I think we should make her the CM candidate for BJP to win easily in polls,” tweeted Dr Swamy, on the eve of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s two-day visit to Gujarat where he will lay foundation stones and inaugurate a number of projects with an eye on the Assembly elections.
Ms Patel was replaced last year after corruption and nepotism allegations. There also were talks that she was losing the grip over administration. With crucial polls just round the corner, BJP leadership, including Mr Modi, have been visiting the state frequently. During is latest visit, Mr Modi will also visit Vadnagar, his birth place, for the first time since becoming the Prime Minister in 2014.
The ruling BJP is also taking out a Gaurav Yatra where senior party leaders, including Union ministers and chief ministers of the party, are also participating. Atrocities on Dalits and the quota demand by Patidars are some of the issues that have been troubling the Gujarat government. Opposition Congress is also giving it a tough fight.