The Congress has announced the first list of candidates for the upcoming Maharashtra assembly elections. There are a total of 51 candidates contesting from the state of Maharashtra. The list includes Ashok Chavan, the former Chief Minister of the State. The state President Balasaheb Thorat, the leader of Opposition Vijay Namdevrao Wadettiwar, CLP leader KC Padavi are among the announced candidates from the State.
Congress is to contest the elections in an alliance with the NCP. The Congress had earlier won 42 seats in the 2014 assembly elections and the NCP had won 41. Yashomati Chandrakanta Thakur, the working President of Maharashtra PCC, is slated to contest from Teaosa Assembly Constituency, Mumbai PCC Chief Ekanath Khadse's Daughter Varsha Ekanath Gaikwad is to Contest From Dharavi. On the other hand, Baba Siddiqui's son Zeeshan Siddiqui is to contest the elections from Bandra East Assembly Constituency with CLP Leader Vijay Namdeorao Wadettiwar from the Brahmapuri Assembly Constituency. The Congress and the NCP had fared poorly in the Lok Sabha elections held earlier this year. The NCP won only four out of the 48 parliamentary seats in the State, while the Congress had won a solitary seat.
The two allies in the State have been at loggerheads for a while now over the issue of seat-sharing. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah have been meeting party leaders to decide on the final list of candidates. Shiv Sena leader Uddhav Thackeray had earlier notified the media that the seat-sharing pact is on the verge of being finalised. This came at a time where there has been a delay in declaring the seat-sharing pact for the Assembly elections. Thackeray asserted that the discussions between him and Union Minister Amit Shah have been fruitful. Furthermore, he stated that an announcement can be expected anytime now. In the past, the BJP and the Shiv Sena have contested the 2014 State Assembly elections separately after failing to arrive at a seat-sharing formula.