Murli Manohar Joshi says parliamentary board will decide on candidature for Varanasi seat

New Delhi, March 9: Amid growing speculation over an internal tiff within the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the replacement of senior BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi with the party’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi in Varanasi constituency, Joshi left the matter to the discretion of the parliamentary board.

Addressing media on Sunday, Joshi said that the parliamentary board will decide the candidates considering the best interest of the party at the national and regional level.

“There is no speculation about who will contest from Varanasi because it would be solely decided by the Parliamentary board during the meeting on March 13 in the presence of our prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi. I am sure they would take the decision respecting the interests of the constituency and also in view of Modi’s chances of becoming the prime minister,” said Joshi.

While Joshi passed the buck to the parliamentary committee, BJP supporters pitched strongly for Modi in Varanasi constituency to ensure prosperity in the province.

BJP supporters took to streets on the same day in Varanasi in northern Uttar Pradesh with pro Modi slogans demanding Joshi to surrender his seat to Modi.

“We don’t want that Joshi’s decision thins the chances of Modi’s victory in the constituency. And if Joshi really wants Varanasi to progress, he should give Modi a chance to contest from this constituency and win. This would prove his greatness,” said a BJP supporter, Sriram Jaiswal.

Modi’s supporters had launched the campaign demanding that he contests next month’s general elections from Varanasi in UP while Joshi was reportedly not inclined to surrender his seat.

Varanasi is not only considered a BJP stronghold, party workers also feel that if Modi contests from the constituency, it would galvanise the entire UP region to return to BJP. (ANI)