Modi will replace sitting MP and senior party leader Murli Manohar Joshi, who had been resisting the move. Joshi has been shifted to Kanpur seat. (Agencies)
BJP president Rajnath Singh also got his way as he will contest from Lucknow in place of incumbent party MP Lalji Tandon, who too had earlier ruled out changing his constituency for Rajnath Singh.
Rajnath Singh had won the last election from Ghaziabad.
Senior party leader Arun Jaitley has been fielded from Amritsar constituency in Punjab, BJP general secretary Ananth Kumar said at a press conference while releasing the list of 98 candidates finalized for 12 states.
Jaitley will replace Navjot Singh Sidhu, who was called by the party leadership during the day and offered an option of contesting from three other seats which he refused.
On being asked whether Modi could contest from Gujarat also, Ananth Kumar said, ‘there is every possibility’.
He said that the list for Gujarat would be finalized on March 19, when the seat for senior leader LK Advani will also be announced.
Speculation about Modi contesting from Varanasi had been rife over the last several days because of which Joshi had been unhappy and even raised the issue at a meeting of the Central Election Committee recently.
However, the BJP leadership was keen to see Modi contest from the temple town of Varanasi as it hopes that this will boost the party's electoral prospects in entire Uttar Pradesh where 80 Lok Sabha seats are at stake.
Once a forte of BJP, the party's tally in the state has been dwindling and hit a low of 10 in 2009 polls. It hopes a big swing in its fortune this time round.
The party avoided potential trouble in Bihar by deciding to field actor-turned-politician Shatrughan Sinha from his Patna Saheb seat. Earlier, the party was in two minds on this.
Party general secretary Varun Gandhi has been fielded from Sultanpur while his mother Maneka Gandhi will contest from Pilibhit, which he had won last time, BJP said.
Former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Uma Bharti, who shifted her base to Uttar Pradesh has been given ticket from Jhansi.
Modi will replace sitting MP and senior party leader Murli Manohar Joshi, who had been resisting the move. Joshi has been shifted to Kanpur seat.