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Lok Sabha elections 2024: These 4 controversial MPs missing from BJP's first list

Mar 03, 2024 03:56 PM IST

Lok Sabha elections 2024: Names of Parvesh Verma, Jayant Sinha, Sadhvi Pragya Thakur, and Ramesh Bidhuri were missing from the BJP's first list of candidates.

The Bharatiya Janata Party replaced as many as 33 sitting MPs with new faces as it released its first list with names of 195 candidates for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls on Saturday. In what can be seen as a message for controversial leaders from the BJP high command, several notable figures such as Parvesh Verma, son of former Delhi CM Sahib Singh Verma, former Union minister and Hazaribagh MP Jayant Sinha, Bhopal MP Sadhvi Pragya Thakur, and South Delhi MP Ramesh Bidhuri, who allegedly made communal remarks in Parliament, were missing from the party's first list of candidates.

Bhopal MP Sadhvi Pragya Thakur(File)
Bhopal MP Sadhvi Pragya Thakur(File)

The BJP named five candidates for Lok Sabha seats in Delhi, four of them replacement of sitting MPs. The BJP has named Praveen Khandelwal as its candidate from Chandani Chowk Lok Sabha Sabha seat, dropping two-term MP and former Union minister Harsh Vardhan. For the West Delhi seat, BJP replaced two-term MP Parvesh Sahib Singh Verma with Kamaljeet Sehrawat. It named Bansuri Swaraj, daughter of late BJP leader Sushma Swaraj, as its candidate from New Delhi Lok Sabha constituency, currently held by Meenakshi Lekhi. From South Delhi, the BJP named Ramvir Singh Bidhuri as its candidate, dropping Ramesh Bidhuri.

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Also Read | Lok Sabha elections 2024: BJP releases 1st list of 195 candidates. Who is contesting from where? 10 takeaways

BJP's first Lok Sabha election candidate list: 4 big names missing

1. Sadhvi Pragya Thakur: The BJP has fielded Alok Sharma for the Bhopal seat in Madhya Pradesh, replacing incumbent MP Sadhvi Pragya Thakur. During the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Thakur gained prominence as one of the 'giant killers,' securing victory over Congress stalwart Digvijaya Singh by an impressive margin of 3,64,822 votes. Despite her electoral success, Thakur's tenure has been marred by controversies. Prior to the 2019 polls, she sparked outrage by comparing Hemant Karkare, an Ashok Chakra awardee and former Maharashtra anti-terrorism squad (ATS) chief, to mythological figures Ravan and Kans. Her remarks on Karkare's demise during the Mumbai terror attacks further fueled controversy, leading to a show-cause notice from the Election Commission of India (ECI), prompting the BJP to distance itself from her.

Also Read | Lok Sabha polls 2024: Four Bhojpuri stars in BJP' first list. Who are they?

Subsequently, Thakur stirred another controversy by praising Nathuram Godse, Mahatma Gandhi's assassin, as a patriot. Despite issuing an apology, her statements continued to draw condemnation, including from Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who termed them as "extremely condemnable."

2. Ramesh Bidhuri: Ramesh Bidhuri, the BJP MP, recently sparked a massive controversy by making derogatory remarks directed at MP Danish Ali during a discussion on the success of the Chandrayaan-3 mission. Videos of Bidhuri's contentious comments targeting Danish Ali quickly circulated on social media, drawing widespread criticism. BJP president JP Nadda has reportedly issued a show cause notice to Ramesh Bidhuri, their party MP, over his use of objectionable language against Danish Ali within the Parliament. The offending remarks were expunged from the Parliamentary records, and defence minister Rajnath Singh promptly expressed regret for Bidhuri's conduct during the session.

3. Parvesh Verma: From the West Delhi constituency of Delhi, the BJP has fielded Kamaljeet Sehrawat dropping its sitting MP Parvesh Verma. Kamaljeet Sahrawat is the former mayor of South Delhi Municipal Corporation and is one of party's strong faces in Delhi MCD. Last year, there were reports that the leadership of the BJP has strongly condemned Parvesh Verma's remarks, which called for an "economic boycott" of a particular community. Verma made these comments during a gathering titled 'Virat Hindu Sabha,' organised by the local unit of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad and other Hindu organisations in East Delhi on October 9 last year. In a speech, Verma advocated for a "complete boycott" of "these people," without explicitly naming any particular community.

Also Read | New faces, veterans in BJP’s first list for Lok Sabha polls

4. Jayant Sinha: BJP’s Hazaribag MLA Manish Jaiswal replaces sitting party MP Jayant Sinha from Hazaribag Lok Sabha seat. Jaiswal won the Hazaribag assembly constituency in 2019 by defeating Congress’ Dr Ramchandra Prasad. Sinha, son of former union minister Yashwant Sinha, said earlier in the day that he had requested party president JP Nadda to relieve him from direct electoral duties. In 2019, Jayant Sinha said he and some other BJP leaders provided financial assistance to pay the legal fees of the persons accused of lynching a meat trader in Jharkhand’s Ramgarh in 2017. His admission came a year after he triggered a controversy by felicitating and posing with the six accused after they were released on bail and taken straight to the minister’s residence in Hazaribagh.

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