BJP Manages to Get Back Alliance Partner Jankar

Mumbai: The BJP has managed to woo back its alliance partner in Maharashtra by giving him a Lok Sabha seat. Rashtriya Samaj Party chief Mahadev Jankar was expected to join the opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi and contest Lok Sabha poll from Madha seat as MVA candidate. Sharad Pawar had a meeting with Mr. Jankar, who is the leader of the Dhangar community. This would have also helped Supriya Sule in Baramati, where the Dhangar community has a sizable population. However, Mr. Jankar has declared support for the NDA after meeting Eknath Shinde, Devendra Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar.

After meeting the Mahayuti leaders, Mr. Jankar claimed he had never left the alliance. “I will work to ensure the victory of Mahayuti candidates in Lok Sabha elections.”

A joint statement issued by the Mahayuti alliance said that the country is taking huge strides under PM Modi in development and hence Jankar will continue to be with the Mahayuti. In the meeting, it was decided that one parliamentary seat would be allocated to Jankar's party.

However, contrary to Mr. Jankar’s claim that he had never parted ways with the BJP-led alliance, the Dhangar leader had met Mr. Pawar and expressed his willingness to support Ms Sule in Baramati. Mr. Pawar had also offered him the Madha seat.

The BJP has renominated Ranjitsinh Naik Nimbalkar from the Madha constituency. Mr Jankar had contested the Baramati Lok Sabha seat against Mr. Sule in 2014. Though the BJP has promised him a seat this time also, it will not be either Madha or Baramati. According to sources, Mr. Jankar or his party’s candidate might be fielded from the Parabhani seat.

Ajit Pawar’s wife Sunetra is likely to be the Mahayuti candidate in Baramati. Though the BJP has managed to pacify Mr. Jankar, the challenges for Sunetra are not over. Former Shiv Sena MLA Vijay Shivtare has remained firm on contesting the seat even if he is removed from the party.

“I have decided to contest the Lok Sabha elections from the Baramati seat, irrespective of the party’s action against me. I have conveyed my opinion to party chief Eknath Shinde that the Pawar family’s, Sharad Pawar or Ajit Pawar, hold on the constituency should be brought to an end. There is terror of the Pawar family in the constituency and the people should be freed of it,” he said.

Ajit Pawar also faced a challenge from former minister Harshwardhan Patil, who has been the nemesis of the NCP leader for over a decade. Mr. Patil’s Indapur assembly constituency, where he lost to NCP’s Dattatray Barne in 2019, is part of the Baramati Lok Sabha seat. Mr. Patil had earlier alleged that he is receiving threats from Ajit Pawar’s supporters and demanded police action against them. However, Mr.Fadnavis has managed to placate Mr. Patil.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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