The BJP on Saturday released its eighth list of eleven candidates for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, fielding Taranjit Singh Sandhu, India’s just retired ambassador to the United States of America, from the Amritsar seat in Punjab.

In the list of candidates for three states, the BJP has relied largely on turncoats to fight the political battle on the six seats of Punjab. Overall, the Punjab is witnessing a three-corner contest, with the state ruling party AAP and former all-ally Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on the other side of the political spectrum.

Besides outsider IFS officer Sandhu, Sushil Kumar Rinku, a sitting MP who switched sides from the AAP, is contesting from the reserved seat of Jalandhar. Likewise, former Congress leaders Praneet Kaur, who is also wife of ex-CM of Punjab Amrinder Singh, and Ravneet Singh Bittu are fighting the polls from Patiala and Ludhiana constituencies respectively. However, BJP’s sitting MP from North West Delhi Hans Raj Hans has been moved to try his luck from Faridkot (SC) seat.

Among the three seats in Odisha, Bhartruhari Mahtab, a six-time BJD MP who joined the BJP this week, has been told to contest again from Cuttack. Dr Rabindra Narayan Behera is fighting from Jaipur (SC), and Sukanta Kumar Panigrahi is from Kandhamal.

In West Bengal, former police officer Debashish Dhar is contesting from Birbhum and Dr Pranat Tudu from Jhargram (ST). The party has so far declared candidates for over 400 seats in the elections, which will begin on April 19 and end on June 1.