Rebellion in Maharashtra is taking on dizzying proportions with last minute switchovers by ticket aspirants. Friday is the last date for filing nominations for the Assembly polls on October 13. Shiv Sena MLA from Dadar, Sada Sarvankar, miffed with being ignored by his party on Thursday crossed over to the Congress which has rewarded him with a ticket from Mahim in Mumbai.
Meanwhile Congress Minister and Amravati MLA Sunil Deshmukh who lost out to President Pratibha Patil’s son Rajendra Shekhawat has got support from a new quarter. The Republican Left Democratic Front (RLDF) has decided to back Mr. Deshmukh who will file his nomination papers on Friday.
Jayant Patil of the RLDF said that Mr. Deshmukh had asked for the backing of the Front. Even though the Amravati seat was allotted to the Samajwadi Party (an RLDF constituent), it was decided to support the candidature of Mr. Deshmukh who will contest as an independent.
Mr. Sarvankar’s exit seemed certain after Sena executive president Uddhav Thackeray announced popular Marathi television anchor Aadesh Bandekar as the party’s candidate for Mahim. Last Sunday, Mr. Sarvankar’s supporters protested outside the house of Sena leader Manohar Joshi sensing that their leader was not going to get a ticket. While Mr. Sarvankar denied the protestors were his supporters, clearly he was on his way out. He also met Mr. Thackeray but was tight-lipped about the outcome of that meeting.
Mr. Sarvankar’s seat Dadar has become part of Mahim Assembly constituency after delimitation. The Congress announced four more candidates for the elections. Dhule rural has gone to Rohidas Patil, Yavatmal to Nilesh Parvekar,
Kalamnuri to Rajiv Satav apart from Sarvankar in Mahim. Pradesh Congress Committee President Manikrao Thakre was angling for a ticket for his son Rahul from Yavatmal.
BJP candidate joins MNS
While rebels are filing nominations all over the State, rebellion even has come from candidates who have got tickets. Sadashiv Lokhande who is a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate from Chembur in Mumbai has left the party and joined the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS). Lokhande has been given a ticket by the MNS from Kurla which is a reserved seat. The BJP has field Anil Thakur in his place.
Meanwhile, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has announced its second list of 26 candidates. It has given tickets to 23 new faces and two Ministers. A surprise choice is Pallavi Sanjay Patil, from Vikhroli, the wife of the newly elected MP from NCP Sanjay Patil. Till now the NCP has got five seats in Mumbai, two less than last time.