BJP clears Advani, five other candidates for LS polls

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New Delhi, Jun 26 (UNI) The BJP today formally gave its approval for its Prime Ministerial nominee L K Advani to contest from Gandhinagar constituency in its first list of six candidates for the coming Lok Sabha (LS) polls.

The Central Election Committee (CEC), which met today, also cleared the names of two of its sitting MPs from Punjab -- Mr Navjyot Singh Sidhu from Amritsar and Mr Vinod Khanna from Gurdaspur.

Others who have been given the nod were Mr Sripad Naik (Goa North), Lt Gen G P S Rawat (Pauri Gharwal and Mr Anurag Thakur (Hamirpur), Secretary of the CEC Ananth Kumar told newspersons after the meeting.

The CEC would hold its next meeting on July 11.

Party circles were agog with speculations that it was ready with a list of 160 seats but the party chose to release only six names.

The party has undertaken the process of candidate selection in 297 LS constituencies where it had held the seat atleast once since 1996.

Former BJP President M Venkaiah Naidu, who is incharge of the Election Management Committee, said the party had asked the state BJP units to carry out the selection process in their respective states and send their recommendations to the CEC.

He added the party had already chosen Mr Advani to be the nominee for the Prime Ministerial post and wanted the candidate selection process to be over by August.

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