Hyderabad: Discussions are underway in the BJP on fielding firebrand leader Uma Bharti or MP Smriti Irani against Congress President Sonia Gandhi in the impending Lok Sabha elections, senior party leader M Venkaiah Naidu said here on Thursday.
"Whether that report is correct or not would be known after the ticket is announced. It is true that a suggestion has come (on fielding Uma Bharti). Some have given that suggestion. I am telling you another thing. Some have given a suggestion that Smriti Irani can be fielded. Party is discussing that," he told reporters in response to a query on reports that suggested that Uma may be pitted against Gandhi.
To a question on the resentment expressed by senior leaders like Jaswant Singh (from Barmer in Rajasthan) and Lalmuni Chaube following denial of tickets, Naidu, a member of BJP Central Election Committee, said he had favoured giving ticket to the former Union Minister.
"You have taken two names. In 543 constituencies, one or two constituencies.. It has happened like that. It is unfortunate. I am not belittling anyone. Jaswant Singh is a senior leader. Party gave him many opportunities. He has been an MP, minister, opposition leader in Rajya Sabha. He could not be given ticket. I favoured giving him ticket. But he could not be given due to local factors.
All should follow party`s decisions. It is unfortunate that he has filed nomination as an independent. But these are exceptions. Such situations are very few in BJP," he said.
Naidu replied in the negative when asked whether it would impact poll outcome in Rajasthan.