With the Congress fielding two candidates for the upcoming Maharashtra Legislative Council (MLC) polls, Maharashtra Congress chief Balasaheb Thorat, on Sunday, said that the Congress was under no pressure to field only one candidate. Sources have reported that CM Uddhav Thackeray had asked Congress to file only one candidate. This move would ensure that BJP will be given 4 seats in exchange of unopposedly electing Thackeray to the council. Currently, the Maha Vikas Aghadi is holding a meeting to discuss the MLC polls.
"There are 6 nominees from the Maha Vikas Aghadi - two of which are from Congress. We have chosen combinedly so as to avoid any confusion. There has been no pressure and we have discussed how to choose together. If we fight together with full force, we will win all 6 seats (2 each), while three will go to BJP," he said.
Earlier on Saturday, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi okayed Rajesh Rathod as Congress' sole candidate for the upcoming elections. Later, however, State Congress president Balasaheb Thorat announced that Rajkishor alias Papa Modi will be the party's second nominee for the seat. The nine seats of MLC by MLAs became vacant on April 24 and EC will soon hold elections after the Governor requested the same.
BJP chose Pravin Datake, Gopichand Padalkar, Ajit Gopchade, and Ranjitsingh Mohit Patil as its nominees for the elections, ignoring senior BJP leader Eknath Khadse, inspite of his public interest to represent the BJP in the MLC elections. Meanwhile, Shiv Sena selected CM Uddhav Thackeray and current Deputy state Council chairman Dr. Neelam Gorhe as its candidates to the state council. The elections are being held after Governor Koshyari failed to nominate CM Uddhav Thackeray to the council, inspite of several reminders from State cabinet. f he is not elected to the Council by six months of taking oath as CM- which will end on May 28, Thackeray will have to resign as CM.