The Bharatiya Janata Party on Friday set at rest speculation that Uma Bharti could be fielded against Sonia Gandhi from Rae Bareli after the firebrand leader asserted that she "cannot leave my Jhansi" from where she has already been nominated.
"As far as Uma Bharti is concerned, she will contest from Jhansi," BJP spokesman Sudhanshu Trivedi told reporters in New Delhi.
Trivedi said candidates for Rae Bareli as well as Amethi, where Rahul Gandhi is contesting, are yet to be finalised.
There was speculation that the party was considering fielding Bharti, former chief minister of Madhya Pradesh, from Rae Bareli against Gandhi. The speculation gathered momentum after Yoga guru Ramdev suggested it two days back.
The clearing of the air by the party came after Bharti herself asserted that she would not leave Jhansi where she has already been campaigning.
"I am thankful to Baba Ramdev for the proposal. But I cannot leave my Jhansi," Bharti said. She conveyed the decision to party chief Rajnath Singh.
At the same time, she said she was ready to respect the party decision and contest from Rae Bareli in addition to Jhansi if the leadership wanted.
"If party says I will constest from Rae Bareli also," she said.
Image: BJP leader Uma Bharti will contest from Jhansi