Lok Sabha Elections 2024: Gadkari, Goyal, Pankaja Figure In BJP's First List Of Maharashtra Candidates While 5 Sitting MPs Dropped

Lok Sabha Elections 2024: Gadkari, Goyal, Pankaja Figure In BJP's First List Of Maharashtra Candidates While 5 Sitting MPs Dropped

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, whose name was missing in the first list, has been re-nominated from Nagpur, while Union Minister Piyush Goyal has been fielded from North Mumbai, replacing sitting MP Gopal Shetty

FPJ Political BureauUpdated: Thursday, March 14, 2024, 01:17 PM IST
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10% Additional GST On Diesel Vehicles As Pollution Tax Proposes Gadkari | PTI

Even though the seat sharing talks with the Shiv Sena and the NCP are still on, the BJP went ahead and unilaterally announced the first of its 20 candidates in Maharashtra. Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, whose name was missing in the first list, has been re-nominated from Nagpur, while Union Minister Piyush Goyal has been fielded from North Mumbai, replacing sitting MP Gopal Shetty. Apart from Shetty, the BJP has dropped Umesh Patil in Jalgaon, Manoj Kotak in Mulund,Sanjay Dhotre in Akola and Preetam Munde in Beed. The list has the inedible imprint of deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis. The party has nominated Pankaja, who was sulking on the political periphery since her defeat in 2019 assembly elections, from Beed. Pankaja had been hitting out at the leadership, without taking any names, for not being given due representation in the party functioning.

She will ride on the legacy of her father and OBC leader Gopinath Munde in addition to Modi ki guarantee. The party has re-nominated three union ministers from the state -- Dr Bharti Pawar, Raosaheb Dance and Kapil Patil; they have been retained their existing seats of Dindori (ST), Jalna and Bhiwandi, respectively. Maharashtra’s Forest minister Sudhir Mungantiwar, who was reluctant to be in the fray, will be contesting from Chandrapur in Vidarbha, a lone seat won by the Congress in the 2019 polls. The party has nominated Mihir Kotecha from Mumbai north east replacing Manoj Kotak, while Akola’s LS MP Sanjay Dhotre, who is bed-ridden due to illness, will be replaced by his son Anup Dhotre.

Ticket to former Pune mayor Muralidhar Mohol

In Pune, the party has given ticket to former Pune mayor Muralidhar Mohol. The seat was lying vacant after the demise of BJP MP Girish Bapat. Mohol has been a close confidant of Fadnavis. Mohol belongs to the political influential Maratha community. BJP has recently nominated former legislator Medha Kulkarni, who is a Brahmin, to the Rajya Sabha. The BJP has also switched Unmesh Patil from Jalgaon LS constituency and former MLA Smita Wagh will be the new candidate.

Among the other key nominees include Dr Heena Gavit at Nandurbar (ST), Raksha Khadse at Raver, Ramdas Tadas at Wardha, Prataprao Patil-Chikhlikar from Nanded, Dr Sujay Vikhe-Patil from Ahmadnagar, Sudhakar Shrungare from Latur (SC), Ranjitsinh Hindurao NaikNimbalkar from Madha and Sanjaykaka Patil from Sangli. Incidentally, the BJP hopes to field another 14 seats, meaning the party thereby plans to contest a total of 34 seats, leaving 11 to Eknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena and 7 to Ajit Pawar-led NCP. The BJP, with its allies, is confident of achieving its Mission 45 in Maharashtra.

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