Maharashtra poll plan: BJP drops 4 more sitting MPs

Published on Mar 24, 2019 01:16 AM IST

Girish Bapat picked over Anil Shirole for Pune; Harishchandra Chavan (Dindori), Sharad Bansode (Solapur), AT Patil (Jalgaon) dropped too

Girish Bapat was picked by the BJP over sitting MP Anil Shirole for Pune.(HT FILE)
Girish Bapat was picked by the BJP over sitting MP Anil Shirole for Pune.(HT FILE)
Hindustan Times | By, Mumbai

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) released names of another six candidates from Maharashtra for the Lok Sabha polls on Saturday. The party has changed four of its sitting Members of Parliament in this list, including its Members of Parliament from Solapur, Dindori, Pune and Jalgaon constituencies.

In Pune, senior leader and state minister Girish Bapat, 68, will now contest on BJP ticket instead of sitting MP Anil Shirole. Bapat, a five-term legislator from Pune and its guardian minister in the last term, is BJP’s most visible face in the city. He had put his hat in the ring during 2014 polls but Shirole, considered to be close to late BJP leader Gopinath Munde, was given the ticket.

The other three MPs dropped are three-term MP from Dindori, Harishchandra Chavan, Solapur MP Sharad Bansode and Jalgaon MP AT Patil. While Shirole accepted the party decision, Chavan has expressed unhappiness with the party move to replace him.

“The party has made decisions to replace sitting MPs after considering ground reports as well as surveys, taking into consideration winnability of the candidate. The candidates have been selected after due process and we don’t expect any rebellion in these seats,” said a senior BJP leader and minister.

The BJP has also announced Sena legislator Pratap Chikhalikar and Kanchan Kul as candidates for two of the toughest seats in the state for BJP, Nanded and Baramati respectively.

Nanded is represented by state Congress president Ashok Chavan and Baramati is the home turf of NCP MP and daughter of party chief Sharad Pawar, Supriya Sule. Sena legislator Chikhalikar from Logan in Nanded, is considered Chavan’s opponent and has been picked by CM Devendra Fadnavis.

In Baramati, Kanchan Kul, wife of Daund legislator (Pune district, falls in the Baramati Lok Sabha constituency) from the Rashtriya Samaj Paksha, a smaller ally of the BJP, has been given the ticket to take on Sule.

The other three new faces who have replaced sitting MPs include former NCP leader Bharati Pawar (Dindori), who joined the party this week, BJP MLC Smita Wagh (Jalgaon) and Jaysiddheshwar Swami (Solapur).


    Ketaki Ghoge is an associate editor with Hindustan Times. Based in Mumbai, she covers politics and governance in Maharashtra. Journalist for the last 13 years, Ketaki enjoys dicing government policies, administration and analysing politics of the day.

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