Islampur: BJP, Sena, Cong join forces to defeat Jayant Patil

  • Yogesh Joshi, Hindustan Times, Pune
  • Updated: Oct 01, 2014 21:32 IST

They are rivals and have exchanged barbs against each other to score political brownie points.

But when the fight is against senior Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Jayant Patil and former rural development minister, all these rivals from BJP, Shiv Sena and Congress have joined hands to put up a combined front by supporting independent candidate Abhijeet Patil for the Islampur seat.

On the last day of withdrawing nomination papers on Wednesday, the BJP and Shiv Sena candidates pulled out of the contest and instead supported Abhijeet Patil's candidature to ensure that votes don't get split between rivals.

Following suit, senior Congress member and independent candidate Nana Mahadik also withdrew his candidature and extended support to Patil, who already has backing from Swabhimani Shetakari Sanghatana.

Islampur, traditionally a stronghold of Jayant Patil, is now set to witnesses three way contest. Besides Jayant Patil and Abhijeet Patil, Congress party's official candidate Jitendra Patil is also in the fray.

"Our fight is against the dictatorial attitude of Jayant Patil. We have joined hands to end Patil's dictatorship in Islampur," said Abhijeet Patil.

To put up a joint fight, SSS leader and party's lone MP Raju Shetti along with former congress minister from Sangli Patik Patil played crucial role convincing BJP, Shiv Sena nominees to withdraw their candidature.Their efforts to convince congress candidate Jitendra Patil however did not bear results.

The SSS leader said, according to seat sharing formula Islampur was with SSS. However party decided not to field its own candidate and instead support Abhijeet Patil to avoid division of votes. Shetti and Jayant Patil have been the bete noirs locked into fight over controlling sugar politics of Sangli district.

With the Shiv Sena, BJP and Swabhimani Shetakari Sanghatana coming together, Islampur becomes a curious battle-field in the October 15 assembly elections where grand alliance still remains intact inspite of Sena, BJP parting their ways.

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