BJP announces first list of 77 candidates for Chhattisgarh polls

PTI New Delhi, Delhi, India Oct 21, 2018, 08.13 AM(IST)

File photo of Raman Singh. Photograph:( Zee News Network )

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The party also announced the names of 38 candidates for the election to the 119-member Telangana Assembly

Releasing its first list of 77 candidates for assembly elections in Chhattisgarh, the BJP Saturday fielded Chief Minister Raman Singh from his traditional Rajnandgaon seat and dropped 14 incumbent MLAs in its bid to capture power in the state for a fourth straight term.

After a meeting of the BJP's Central Election Committee, which was attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and its president Amit Shah, the party also announced the names of 38 candidates for the election to the 119-member Telangana Assembly.

Names of 13 candidates, all Christians, have been also been declared for the polls to the 40-member Mizoram Assembly, Union minister J P Nadda said.

Chhattisgarh, along with Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, is ruled by the BJP out of the five poll-bound states. Chhattisgarh has 90 assembly seats and will be the first to go to the polls in two phases on November 12 and 20.

The Bharatiya Janata Party has fielded Ramdayal Uike, the working president of the Chhattisgarh Congress who joined the saffron party recently, from Pali-Tanakhar seat, and former IAS officer O P Chaudhary, who quit the service to join the party, from Kharsia, a Congress stronghold.

Among the candidates announced so far, 14 are women, 25 are less than 40 years of age, 10 candidates belong to the Scheduled Castes and 29 STs.

The first phase of polling covers 18 seats spread across eight Naxal-affected districts of Bastar, Bijapur, Dantewada, Sukma, Kondagaon, Kanker, Narayanpur and Rajnandgaon. Out of these 18 seats, the BJP Saturday named candidates for 17 assembly segments.

The BJP had won 49 seats in the previous assembly polls in 2013 in the 90-member Chhattisgarh Assembly.

A two minute-silence was held for the victims of the Amritsar train accident during the Central Election Committee meeting, Nadda said.

He said party leaders also expressed satisfaction at the performance of the party in local body polls in Tripura and Jammu and Kashmir.