BJP fields four candidates for polls to 9 MLC seats in Maharashtra; Pankaja Munde, Eknath Khadse missing from list
Former NCP MP Ranjitsinh Mohite Patil and three others figure in the list of BJP candidates for the 21 May Maharashtra Legislative Council poll
Mumbai: Former NCP MP Ranjitsinh Mohite Patil and three others figure in the list of BJP
candidates for the 21 May Maharashtra Legislative Council poll. The list was released from Delhi on Friday, a state
BJP functionary said.
Senior state BJP leaders Eknath Khadse and Pankaja Munde don't find a place in the list, which instead has lesser-known faces like Gopichand Padalkar, Praveen Datke and Ajit Gopchhade. Ranjitsinh Mohite Patil who joined the BJP ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections is the son of former Maharashtra deputy chief minister Vijaysinh Mohite Patil.
While Ranjitsinh joined the BJP officially, his father hasn't done so formally. Padalkar who joined the BJP ahead of last year's Assembly polls, had unsuccessfully contested against Ajit Pawar from Baramati. Pawar had retained his seat with a margin of over six lakh votes.
The Council election is being held for nine seats, for which the electoral college is the 288-member Maharashtra Legislative Assembly.
The quota for a winning candidate is 29 votes. The election assumes importance Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray is among the candidates. While Pankaja Munde lost the 2019 Assembly election from Parli to estranged cousin and NCP leader Dhananjay Munde, Khadse who was denied Assembly poll ticket by his party, had recently declared that he would like to contest the 21 May poll.
BJP has 105 MLAs and the party has claimed support of 11 members of smaller parties and independents. It needs 116 first preference votes to get its four candidates elected. Talks are still on among the three ruling MVA alliance partners with the Congress adamant on fielding a second candidate. If the allies contest more than five seats, there would be an election.
During the trust vote in the Assembly, the MVA had secured support of 169 MLAs, while four MLAs (CPM 1, MNS 1,
AIMIM 2) had abstained. The biennial elections are being held to fill in seats which fell vacant after Council members retired on 24 April.
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