Lucknow/Varanasi, March 15 :
Celebrations broke out among BJP members in Varanasi after the party late Saturday announced the candidature of its prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi from the temple town.
Several hundreds of party supporters shouted pro-Modi slogans, blew conches, smeared each other with “gulaal” (colour) and burst crackers after the late night announcement.
BJP workers said they would be performing a special puja at the famous Kashi Vishwanath temple in the city Monday to thank the diety for paving the way for Modi.
Modi will replace sitting MP Murli Manohar Joshi
Narendra Modi late Saturday thanked the party for announcing his candidature for the Lok Sabha polls from the temple town of Varanasi.
“Grateful to the Party for giving me opportunity to contest the election from the holy city of Varanasi! An honour to contest from Varanasi,” Modi tweeted minutes after the announcement.
“With blessings of Ganga Mata & Kashi Vishwanath, let us work towards success of Mission 272+ & create a strong, vibrant & prosperous India,” he said in another tweet.
Modi replaced Bharatiya Janata Party leader and sitting Lok Sabha member from Varanasi Murli Manohar Joshi, who has been shifted to Kanpur.
In Lucknow, BJP workers gathered at the Vidhan Sabha Marg party office and danced to the beats of drums and burst crackers.
Party president Rajnath Singh will contest from Lucknow, replacing sitting MP Lalji Tandon.
Tandon told IANS there was no question of being unhappy and that the party decided to fielded Rajnath Singh from Lucknow in the best interests.
Senior leader Murli Manohar Joshi will contest from Kanpur, Kalraj Mishra from Deoria, Maneka Gandhi from Pilibhit, party general secretary Varun Gandhi from Sultanpur and firebrand leader Uma Bharti from Jhansi.
Former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Kalyan Singh, who recently returned to the BJP, will not contest the polls. The party has fielded his son Rajvir Singh from Etah.