Congress MLA from South Karad, Vilas Undarkar, has made it clear that he will not make way for chief minister Prithviraj Chavan to contest from the assembly constituency, which Chavan is reported to be interested in.
Speaking at a function of Karad residents in Vashi on Sunday evening, Undarkar declared that he would definitely contest from the seat and indicated that he could even join another party if the need arose.
With the election code of conduct coming into force, all eyes are on which seat Chavan will contest from as he did not contest from any seat to become chief minister, preferring to take the MLC route instead. The announcement by Undarkar, who has won the seat seven times, is being seen as a setback to the Congress, as South Karad is considered to be a safe seat for Chavan.
In his address, Undarkar attacked the Congress, instead praising the Gujarat model of development and the promise of a corruption-free India which he said attracted people to Modi. He said politics was all about social work and not business.
Undarkar said, “I do not have money. My assembly constituency is my wealth. Vote as if you are contesting the election yourself.” In a taunt at those who wanted him to quit, Undarkar said, “I have won the elections seven times and have no further ambition. It is the people’s will that is forcing me to contest for the eighth time. Those who are out to finish me will actually meet the fate.”