New Delhi, October 10
Ever since four-time MLA Yashodhara Raje Scindia announced her unwillingness to contest from Shivpuri seat in Madhya Pradesh, questions have been raised on whether her nephew and Union Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia will take the plunge instead.
The BJP is divided on the issue with a section maintaining that Scindia would make his Assembly debut this time and another arguing that he would continue to prefer a central role. Most agree on one point though — Scindia is the “second most popular leader” of Madhya Pradesh BJP after CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
“Scindia has been campaigning actively in Guna-Shivpuri area, which he has represented in the Lok Sabha for a long time. He does not appear keen on contesting state polls, but in this party you can make predictions only at your own risk. Anything can happen after seven MPs, including three Union Ministers, were fielded,” said a BJP strategist.
Sources in the party feel Scindia will contest the November 17 election as this is an important poll with Union Ministers Narendra Singh Tomar, Prahlad Singh Patel and Faggan Singh Kulaste also in the fray. The clarity on Scindia’s future is likely by October 15 when the BJP’s fourth list of MP candidates is expected to be released.
The party did not declare any candidate in Shivpuri in the third list of 57 nominees released yesterday, though the list featured all Scindia loyalists in the state Cabinet. In case Scindia is fielded, the likely seats are Shivpuri, Bamori or Kolaras — constituencies that fall in his erstwhile Guna Lok Sabha segment that he represented between 2002 and 2014. He lost the seat in 2019 to BJP’s KP Yadav, who was his aide until 2018 but defected after being denied an Assembly ticket by the Congress.
Guna was in fact one of the only two LS seats the Congress had won in 2014 LS polls in MP.
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