Sumitra Mahajan refuses to fight Lok Sabha elections 2019
New Delhi, Apr 05: Lok Sabha speaker and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Sumitra Mahajan on Friday said that she will not contest the 2019 election. She had earlier expressed displeasure at the BJP's delay in deciding candidature for the Indore Lok Sabha seat.
Mahajan issued a letter about withdrawing her candidature for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.
Speculations were rife that the BJP was reconsidering Mahajan's candidature citing 'age factor'. She will be turning 76 on April 12. However, there is speculation that like party patriarch L K Advani (91) and veteran leader Murli Manohar Joshi (85), she too might be axed from the BJP's poll list this time.
There is also talk that local MLA and Indore mayor Malini Gaud might be given the party's ticket in place of Mahajan.
The BJP has so far announced candidates for 18 out of the 29 seats in Madhya Pradesh so far.
Meanwhile, the Congress is repeatedly attacking the BJP for not naming Mahajan so far. "We have handpicked five aspirants and would name our candidate within one hour of the BJP announcing its candidates," PWD minister of MP Sajjan Singh Verma said.
It can be recalled that during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, Mahajan, or "Tai (elder sister in Marathi)", as she is called, had won Indore by 4.66 lakh votes. The margin had been stunning as she had survived a scare in 2009 getting only 11,480 votes more than her Congress rival, though most of her wins before that had been by more than one lakh votes.