Vadodara BJP MP Ranjan Bhatt withdraws from 2024 Lok Sabha election race, cites personal reasons

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Vadodara BJP MP Ranjan Bhatt on Saturday said she will not contest in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls due to “personal reasons”. Bhatt’s name appeared in the candidate’s list for Vadodara, which will go to polls on May 7.

“I, Ranjanben Dhananjay Bhatt, am unwilling to contest the Lok Sabha Elections 2024 due to my personal reasons [sic],” she said in a post on X in Gujarati.

Bhatt has been facing opposition against her candidature in the polls.

According to news agency PTI, banners were put up criticising the BJP’s decision to renominate Bhatt from the Vadodara Lok Sabha seat.

Bhatt had won the 2014 by-election after Prime Minister Narendra Modi vacated the seat. She also won the Lok Sabha election in 2019. In the 2019 general elections, she won the seat by a margin of 5.89 lakh votes (72.22%).

Bhatt on Saturday told reporters that she made the decision this morning taking incidents last 10 days into account.  

“The way things have been panning out in the last ten days since my candidature was announced, I felt that although the party has given me a ticket, I should not contest. I made the decision this morning while I was sitting in reflection… I will continue to work as a BJP member and will strive to win this constituency for the party, whoever be the next candidate,” she said.

Bhatt added that she has made up her mind to pull out of the election race and will ask the party to nominate another candidate. “Whoever will be the next Vadodara MP will work for the development of the constituency. I have worked with full commitment for the last ten years in my capacity as an MP. Now, the party can decide who should be the next candidate as it was on my own that I made this decision.”

Earlier in protest to her ticket to polls, former national vice president of the BJP’s Mahila Morcha Dr Jyoti Pandya was suspended. Pandya said Bhatt had been “inefficient” in her ten-year tenure and questioned the flow of “development funds” meant for the city.

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