She has served two Lok Sabha terms as an MP from Rampur constituency between 2004 and 2014.
Hours after joining the Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday, Bollywood actor and former Samajwadi Party MP Jaya Prada was named as party’s candidate for Rampur constituency in Uttar Pradesh. Thanking PM Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah, she said it was like going back home.
“I am feeling happy, I am thankful to Amit Shah ji and Modi ji for having the confidence in me & giving me this seat. Rampur has always given me love and affection, the people love me with all their hearts, It feels like I’m going back home”, she was quoted as saying by ANI.
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Jaya Prada will be up against Samajwadi Party leader and former rival Azam Khan.
She has served two Lok Sabha terms as an MP from Rampur constituency between 2004 and 2014. Before that, she was also a member of Rajya Sabha from 1996 to 2002.
Praising PM Modi, she described him as a brave leader and that the country is safe in his hands. Speaking to reporters, the 56-year old said joining the saffron party was a “significant” moment in her life and she would now work dedicatedly for BJP.
Rampur has highest concentration of Muslims among the 80 Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh. Muslims constitutes close to 50 per cent of the total voters in the constituency. BJP has in the past relied on division of their votes as well as consolidation of Hindus in its favour to win polls.
In 2014, BJP’s Nepal Singh won from Rampur, riding on the Modi wave. This time, however, he was not in contention for tickets due to health reasons. BJP’s star power will be boosted after Jaya Prada joining the party that already boasts of Paresh Rawal and Hema Malini. Babul supriyo is the other well known face from Bollywood in the party, who is also the union minister.