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Maha: NCP fields ex-BJP leader Eknath Khadse for MLC polls

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Mumbai, June 9 (Ajit Weekly News) The ruling ally Nationalist Congress Party has rehabilitated a former senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader, Eknath Khadse and nominated him for the upcoming MLC biennial polls, here on Thursday.

NCP State President and Minister Jayant Patil also announced the second candidate, present Chairman of Legislative Council Ramraje Naik-Nimbalkar as the party’s second candidate for the June 20 elections.

Patil expressed hope that both candidates will win the polls and work to serve the people of the state.

Incidentally, the name of Khadse – who joined NCP in October 2020 – also reportedly figures in the list of 12 nominees pending with Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari since the past over 18 months.

On Wednesday (yesterday), Shiv Sena, Congress and Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party also announced their candidates for the biennial elections to 10 seats in the Maharashtra Legislative Council.

The Sena has fielded former minister Sachin Ahir and Amasha Padvi, and contrary to expectations, it has dropped two senior leaders – Industry Minister Subhash Desai and former minister Diwakar Raote – for the MLCs polls.

The Congress named ex-minister Chandrakant Handore and Mumbai party President Bhai Jagtap for the MLC elections.

BJP’s Leader of Opposition (Council) Pravin Y. Darekar, ex-minister Prof Ram S. Shinde, state organisation leader Shrikant Bhartiya, women’s wing leader Uma G. Khapre and a sitting member Prasad M. Lad.

Belying speculation, the party did not nominate BJP national secretary and ex-minister Pankaja Munde, the daughter of former union minister the late Gopinath Munde.

However, an ally Sadabhau Khot is likely to file his nominations and contest as the sixth candidate supported by BJP.

The polls for the 10 MLC seats shall be held on June 20, 10 days after the much keenly contested Rajya Sabha elections for 6 seats, due on Friday.

The biennial polls shall be held to fill up the vacancies of retiring members including Naik-Nimbalkar, Ravindra Phatak, Sanjay Daund, Surjitsinh Thakur, Vinayak Mete, Darekar, Desai, Raote, Lad and Khot.

The polls for the 10 upper house seats shall be held exactly 10 days after the much keenly contested Rajya Sabha elections for six seats, scheduled for a photo-finish on Friday, June 10.

All the 287 Members – one Shiv Sena MLA Ramesh Latke recently passed away reducing the total strength of 288 – of the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly constitute the electoral college for both these indirect polls.

–Ajit Weekly News

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