Mumbai: The NCP today announced its candidates for the biennial Maharashtra Legislative Council elections scheduled for March 20.

The party has decided to re-nominate Hemant Takle, Kiran Pawaskar while dropping Rana Jagjitsingh Patil. Sitting MLC Sanjay Patil has joined the BJP.

NCP has nominated Thane rural district party chief Anand Thakur as its third candidate in fray. The electoral college for the poll is 288 MLAs (287 elected and one nominated).

The last date of filing of nomination papers is March 10.

Congress sitting MLCs include Jaiprakash Chhajed and Legislative Council Chairman Shivajirao Deshmukh while BJP’s are Vinod Tawde, the Leader of Opposition, and Pandurang Phundkar besides Shiv Sena’s Neelam Gorhe.

BJP sources said Tawde is unlikely to seek renomination since he will contest the assembly polls later this year. BJP sources said the party will not re-nominate Phundkar either.

Shiv Sena is likely to field two candidates including Neelam Gorhe. The quota for winning is 29. Shiv sena has 45 MLAs, BJP-46, NCP-62, and Congress 81.

There is speculation that Deshmukh will not be re-nominated and instead Congress will field his son Satyajit Deshmukh. However, Congress sources said the party is yet to take a decision on candidates for the biennial polls.

The term of the nine retiring members ends on April 24.

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Free Press Journal