Bhai Jagtap. (HT Photo)
Bhai Jagtap. (HT Photo)

We will get north Indian voters back, says Mumbai Congress chief

Newly-appointed Mumbai Congress chief Ashok alias Bhai Jagtap said the city unit was putting in all its the efforts to woo the north Indian voters by bringing back the community leaders to the party
By Surendra P Gangan, Mumbai
PUBLISHED ON JAN 13, 2021 01:03 AM IST

Newly-appointed Mumbai Congress chief Ashok alias Bhai Jagtap said the city unit was putting in all its the efforts to woo the north Indian voters by bringing back the community leaders to the party. Jagtap said that the ‘Hyderabad pattern of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’ would not have any bearing in Mumbai, during the civic polls.

Jagtap, who was appointed as Mumbai Congress president three weeks ago, said that his emphasis would be on weeding out the factionalism in the city unit. “We are well aware that the north Indian voters have shifted away from Congress in the last few years. We have begun the process of winning them back. I have met a few leaders who have an influence on the community. Besides them, a few leaders who have joined BJP in the last few years will soon rejoin Congress and the voters too will come back to us,” he said.

Key north Indian leaders including Kripashankar Singh, Rajhans Singh have defected from the party, while its former president Sanjay Nirupam is sulking from the party affairs. Jagtap said that there are a number of leaders who are ready to return to the party. “I would not take names, but there would be ‘gharwapsi’ of leaders in the near future. Secondly, there would be no room for the factionalism in the party. Soon after, becoming the chief of the city unit, I met all the prominent party leaders from the city. There may be camps in the city, but I want to assure you that there is no ‘Bhai Jagtap’ camp in the unit,” he said.

Jagtap, while talking to a group of a select journalist on Tuesday, said that BJP’s Hyderabad pattern would not have any bearing in BMC elections. “There may be similar attempts by the party, but we are ready to face it. We will have our own Mumbai-pattern to counter it. If the national leadership of the BJP participated in the civic polls, we will attack their failure in controlling the prices of diesel, petrol and high rate of unemployment. The culture of two cities is different,” he said.

Jagtap said that they are demanding delimitation of wards on the basis of 2021 census and reservation of the wards to be announced for 10 years, instead of current reservation of five years.

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