Maha: Cong-NCP face-off for Council bypoll

Mumbai: Even as discussions on seat sharing for Assembly elections are yet to conclude, Congress and NCP, the coalition partners in the Maharashtra government, today nominated their own candidates for the Legislative Council by-election scheduled on August 21.

The by-poll has been necessitated due to the resignation of sitting Shiv Sena MLC Vinayak Raut after his win from Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg Lok Sabha seat in May this year.

With Sena not putting up a candidate, it will be NCP state president Sunil Tatkare pitted against Mohan Joshi of Congress.

Out of the 288 elected MLAs and one nominated member in the state Assembly, 277 MLAs are eligible to vote because of vacancies after some of them won the LS elections. The Legislative Assembly is the electoral college for the by-election.

The scrutiny of papers will be held tomorrow and August 14 is the last date for withdrawal of nomination.

Joshi is a former MLC from the Governor’s quota, whose tenure ended in March this year.

He filed his nomination papers in the presence of Mumbai Congress unit chief Janardan Chandurkar, senior ministers and legislators from Mumbai.

Talking to reporters, Chandurkar expressed confidence that Joshi would be elected to the Council.

“Congress is the largest party in the Assembly. We hope all parties will support us,” he said when asked about possibility of NCP also fielding a candidate.

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