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Sunday, Oct 20, 2019

Raju Shetti issues open challenge to BJP state chief, will now contest Assembly polls

Raju Shetti, on Friday, said that he would step into fray and contest against Chandrakant Patil in whichever segment in rural Maharashtra the latter was considering standing from

pune Updated: Sep 21, 2019 15:11 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Pune
Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana’s chief Raju Shetti is likely to contest from Shirol assembly constituency.
Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana’s chief Raju Shetti is likely to contest from Shirol assembly constituency.(HT/PHOTO)
         

Despite stating that he had no interest in contesting the Assembly polls, Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana’s chief Raju Shetti, on Friday, said that he would step into fray and contest against Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) state unit chief Chandrakant Patil.

Issuing an open challenge to Patil, Shetti said he would contest in whichever segment in rural Maharashtra the latter was considering standing from.

Shetti, who was in Pune to attend various local events, said, “I had no plans of contesting in the Assembly polls and have been preparing for Lok Sabha elections. However, when it comes to Patil, I cannot turn a blind eye. Patil, who has never contested nor won an Assembly election, only talks big and takes jabs at opposition leaders who have been working in the field and winning elections for decades.”

Talking about the challenge, Shetti said, “Patil is not a mass leader and has been making various claims pertaining to Kolhapur district which is false. Considering this situation, party leaders have requested me to contest the election and teach Patil a lesson. I will contest from the same rural area as Patil.”

Shetti is a farmers’ leader. During the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, Shetti was in alliance with the BJP, however, for the 2019 polls he joined hands with Congress and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP).

Shetti likely to contest from Shirol

According to party workers, NCP chief Sharad Pawar and Congress leader Prithviraj Chavan requested Shetti to contest the Assembly polls. Senior party leaders, requesting anonymity, said that the party leaders have convinced Shetti to backtrack, and he is likely to contest from Shirol assembly constituency.

First Published: Sep 20, 2019 18:51 IST

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