Pune: Shiv Sena Veterans Meet Sharad Pawar Ahead of Assembly Elections

Kothrud seat would go to Thackeray faction, while there will be a tug-of-war between Sharad Pawar group and Thackeray faction for Hadapsar seat.
Sharad Pawar
Sharad PawarImage source: IANS

Pune: Political activities in Pune have begun to pick up pace ahead of the upcoming Assembly elections. On Saturday (July 6), two former MLAs from the Shiv Sena Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray faction, Chandrakant Mokate and Mahadev Babar, met senior leader Sharad Pawar, sparking speculation. During their meeting, both former MLAs expressed their intention to contest in the Assembly elections while speaking to the media.

The Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) alliance, comprising the Congress, Nationalist Congress Party (Sharadchandra Pawar) faction, and Shiv Sena Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray faction, had previously contested the Lok Sabha elections together.

The alliance leaders have confirmed that they will continue this coalition for the Assembly elections. Pune city has eight Assembly constituencies: two held by the NCP, five by the BJP, and one by the Congress.

As seat-sharing discussions for the upcoming elections are underway, party officials speculate that the Congress and Sharad Pawar’s NCP will each contest three seats, while the Thackeray faction will get two seats.

It is almost certain that the Kothrud seat will go to the Thackeray faction, while there will be a tug-of-war between the Sharad Pawar group and the Thackeray faction for the Hadapsar seat. In this context, Mokate and Babar's meeting with Sharad Pawar has gained significance.

Speaking to the media after the meeting, Chandrakant Mokate said, “I was called for this meeting because of my good work in the Baramati Lok Sabha constituency. The Maha Vikas Aghadi has strong support in the Kothrud Assembly constituency, and I am interested in contesting from there. Everyone will work with full strength."

Mahadev Babar stated, “MVA workers did a good job in the Pune district during the Lok Sabha elections, and on that background, we met Sharad Pawar today. We are always ready for the Assembly elections. Although it is not yet decided who will contest the Hadapsar seat, we believe it should be ours. It’s not wrong if others are interested in running. Whoever the MVA candidate is, we will ensure their victory.”

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