Maha polls: Close contest on cards in most Raigad seats

 Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate for the Panvel constituency Prashant Thakur arrives to file his nomination paper for the Maharashtra Assembly elections, in Panvel, Thursday, Oct. 3, 2019. (PTI Photo)

Raigad district in Maharashtra, considered a stronghold of Peasants and Workers Party (PWP), is likely to witness a close contest in six out of its seven Assembly constituencies in the state elections to be held on Monday.

The district comprises seven assembly segments - Panvel, Alibaug, Uran, Karjat, Pen, Mahad, and Shrivardhan.

In Panvel, the fight seems to be tilted in favour of sitting BJP MLA Prashant Thakur, who is the chairman of City and Industrial Development Corporation (CIDCO). PWP candidate Haresh Keni, supported by the Congress-NCP, is contesting against the two-time legislator.

In Uran, sitting Shiv Sena MLA Manohar Bhoir is facing a strong challenge from former legislator Vivekanand Patil, a PWP candidate. BJP rebel Mahesh Baladi is also in the fray.

In Karjat, the main fight is between sitting NCP MLA Suresh Lad and Shiv Sena candidate Mahendra Thorave, whereas in Pen, sitting legislator Dhairyashil Patil of PWP is facing a tough challenge from former Congress minister Ravisheth Patil, who joined the BJP recently.

In Alibaug, a coastal town popular with weekend tourists, PWP, and Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena will slug it out. Sena's Mahendra Dalvi is locked in a battle with sitting PWP MLA Subhash Patil from this seat.

The NCP has fielded Aditi Tatkare, daughter of former state minister Sunil Tatkare in Shrivardhan constituency. In her maiden election, Aditi seeks to win against Shiv Sena's Vinod Ghosalkar.

Sunil Tatkare, who was the state president of NCP, wields sizeable clout in Raigad district.

In Mahad, sitting Shiv Sena MLA Bharatsheth Gogavale is facing a challenge from Congress candidate Manikrao Jagtap, a former legislator. Jagtap is also the president of the Raigad district unit of the Congress.

During the poll campaign, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Sena president Uddhav Thackeray has addressed rallies at different places in the district to campaign for the candidates of the saffron alliance. 

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