Times of India reported that Congress asked the former cricketer to contest against BJP's PM candidate expecting him to win the election citing his popularity in the country. However, Sachin, who is also the Rajya Sabha member of the party and Bharat Ratna recipient, refused to accept Congress's offer, added the report.
Recently, Congress General Secretary Digvijay Singh stated that he will contest against Modi in Varanasi if Congress permits him to do so. However, party sources informed that Congress wants to project their trump card, the local candidate Ajay Rai, who has a loyal vote bank of more than 1 lakh votes.
The last time the Congress won the Varanasi seat was in 2004, when Rajesh Kumar Mishra polled more than 2 lakh votes and swept the LS elections. In 2009, however, Mishra fell to fourth position behind BJP's Murli Manohar Joshi, with then SP candidate Ajay Rai securing the third spot.
Varanasi has become a crucial place as Modi is contesting from the constituency this Lok Sabha election. Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal too is expected to contest from the same place challenging the Gujarat CM. Now, it will be interesting to see who will contest from Varanasi with Congress ticket.