'Listening To My Supporters': Milind Deora Amid Speculations Of Quitting Congress To Join Shinde Sena

'Listening To My Supporters': Milind Deora Amid Speculations Of Quitting Congress To Join Shinde Sena

Milind Deora, who is the son of the late Congress leader Murli Deora, is joining the Shinde Sena when there is no guarantee that he will get a ticket from his new party.

S BalakrishnanUpdated: Saturday, January 13, 2024, 07:27 PM IST
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Congress leader Milind Deora | Instagram

Mumbai: The Congress city unit faced significant confusion on Saturday amid reports that prominent leader and former Union minister Milind Deora (47) is considering a move to the Shiv Sena led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde. Deora did not respond to calls and messages from FPJ, but a news agency quoted him as saying, "I am listening to my supporters... Haven't taken a decision yet," indicating that he is evaluating his options, and leaving the Congress cannot be ruled out. A close associate mentioned that CM Shinde has offered him a Rajya Sabha seat.

Deora, with substantial support in South Mumbai, was dismayed to learn that the Shiv Sena (UBT), an ally of the Congress in the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA), is not willing to vacate the prestigious seat for the Congress. Party chief Uddhav Thackeray is determined to field sitting MP Arvind Sawant for the third time. While many urged Thackeray to concede the seat to Congress, he expressed loyalty to Sawant and his constituents, predicting a hat-trick in the upcoming LS polls.

Supporters of Deora, hailing from a traditionally Congress family, argue that being out of power for ten years would adversely impact his political career. Having been elected twice to the LS from this seat in 2004 and 2009, and following his father's four-term representation, the pressure for a comeback is evident.

Sawant asserted that the prestigious seat would not be given to any other party. Even if Deora joins the Shiv Sena, there is no guarantee of a ticket from his new party. The BJP, an ally of the Sena (Shinde), has claimed the SoBo seat, represented earlier by late leader Jaywantiben Mehta. BJP sources suggest that State Minister Mangalprabha Lodha and Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Rahul Narwekar are both eager to contest from this affluent constituency. Therefore, it is reported that Shinde has offered a Rajya Sabha seat to Deora.

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