Looking for headstart, BJP may finalise LS tickets early – Times of India

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New Delhi: Bolstered by its success in the recent state polls, BJP is geared up to finalise its Lok Sabha candidates early amid indications that the party leadership is considering encouraging a few heavyweights who are in the Rajya Sabha to take the field.
Sources said the success of the experiment of announcing its list early worked well in the state polls, helping the party get a vital headstart over its rivals, besides smoothing the ruffled sentiments of those who were not considered. “The momentum is in our favour and things are going to only improve from now on, making it the right time to go for a repeat; also for blooding those who, while useful and big names in their own individual right, have not been put in the ring,” a source said.
“This will enhance the standing of individuals concerned while creating openings for others in Rajya Sabha,” the source said while emphasising that no final decision had been taken yet.
Sources said announcing the Lok Sabha slate earlier, much before the declaration of the schedule by the Commission, makes more sense because the popularity of PM Narendra Modi, the single most important factor in the success, in the party’s view, is going to be in play directly and much more strongly for the central elections.
Sources said during the two-day national office-bearers meeting, state presidents of MP, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh made presentations highlighting how early announcement of candidates, a shift from previous practice, delivered good results for the party as a large number of nominees, figuring in the first two lists, won comfortably. Sources said the party might start announcing candidates by the end of January although poll dates are expected only in February or March.
Sources also hinted that a few prominent faces may be asked to contest the polls, a continuation of the party’s strategy in the recent assembly polls when sitting Lok Sabha MPs were fielded and those who won were asked to resign as MPs and continue as MLAs.
Recently inducted into the Mohan Yadav ministry in Madhya Pradesh, Prahlad Patel and Rakesh Singh, both being MPs multiple times, are now state ministers. Narendra Singh Tomar, a prominent face of the Modi government since 2014, is the speaker of the Madhya Pradesh assembly.


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