Mumbai: The Congress and the NCP have failed to iron out differences on two seats. Despite having alliance at the state level, the two parties have locked horns in Aheri, Gadhchiroli, and Pandharpur in Solapur district.
The allies have fielded candidates in these constituencies. In Aheri, former minister of state Dharmarao Baba Atram is NCP candidate and Dipak Atram is the Congress candidate.
Both have represented this constituency in the past. The infighting within Congress-NCP alliance will help sitting legislator and BJP leader Ambarish Raje Atram win again.
In Pandharpur, Congress legislator Bharat Bhalke joined NCP. NCP announced his candidature. But Congress is not ready to leave its claim. It has fielded its loyalist Shivaji Kalunge.
It was expected he would withdraw his nomination if the state Congress asked him to do so. As an undesrtanding, NCP rebel Juber Bagwan in Solapur City withdrew his candidature against Congress’s Praniti Shinde.
So, it was expected Kalunge, a close confidant of Sushil Kumar Shinde, will withdraw. But Kalunge remained unreachable for party. Understanding with MNS: Though Congress and NCP did not officially ally with MNS, it is now clear they have a tacit understanding with it.
In Kothrud constituency, where BJP state president Chandrakant Patil is contesting, MNS has fielded Kishor Shinde. Shinde was first runner-up in 2009 and on 4th spot in 2014 Assembly elections.
The seat was in NCP quota and NCP decided not to field its candidate. Now Congress and NCP will support MNS candidate and it will corner Patil as this will be a straight fight now.
In Thane city too, NCP withdrew its candidate Suhas Desai to help MNS candidate Avinash Jadhav. With the support of Congress and NCP, Jadhav will now pose a serious challenge to BJP’s candidate and sitting legislator Sanjay Kalelar.