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Lok Sabha Elections 2024: Independent MP Vishal Patil extends support to Congress

Patil, the grandson of former Maharashtra chief minister Vasantdada Patil, won the Lok Sabha election from the Sangli seat. He had contested as an independent candidate after Sangli was allotted to the Shiv Sena (UBT) in the seat-sharing arrangements in Maharashtra.
hemin Joy
Last Updated : 06 June 2024, 16:55 IST
Last Updated : 06 June 2024, 16:55 IST

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New Delhi: Vishal Patil, a Congress rebel who won as an independent in the just concluded Lok Sabha elections from Maharashtra, on Thursday announced support for Congress and I.N.D.I.A. bloc after a meeting with party chief Mallikarjun Kharge.

Patil, the grandson of former Maharashtra chief minister Vasantdada Patil, won the Lok Sabha election from the Sangli seat. He had contested as an independent candidate after Sangli was allotted to the Shiv Sena (UBT) in the seat-sharing arrangements in Maharashtra.

He defeated BJP's Sanjaya 'Kaka' Patil by over one lakh votes while pushing Shiv Sena (UBT)'s Chandrahar Patil to third position. While Vishal Patil garnered 5.71 lakh votes, the Shiv Sena (UBT) candidate got only 60,860 votes.

Patil will not be officially joining Congress as he would be disqualified if does so. With his announcement, I.N.D.I.A. bloc now has the support of 235 MPs. Pappu Yadav, another Congress rebel, as well as Ladakh MP Mohd Haneefa are also likely to support the Opposition bloc.

At present, there is no clarity on whether three other independents -- Engineer Rashid, Amritpal Singh and Umeshbhai Patel -- will support I.N.D.I.A. or NDA.

In a post on X, Kharge said, "welcoming the support of the elected MP from Sangli, Vishal Patil to the Congress party."

Congress General Secretary K C Venugopal said the Congress always had deep roots in Sangli and with this sentiment Patil has extended unconditional support to the party. "This is a truly fitting move which takes the legacy of Congress stalwart Vasantdada Patil ji forward," Venugopal said.

Patil, who also met former Congress presidents Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, is the son of Prakashbapu Patil, a five-term Congress Lok Sabha MP from Sangli. Vishal entered the fray after his brother Pratik Patil announced his retirement from politics recently.

"It did not become possible to contest on a Congress ticket, but people have voted for me taking into consideration the ideology of Congress. I can't forget this. Hence after getting elected, I extended my support to Congress. Today, I have sent a letter of support to Mallikarjun Kharge. I met Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi to take their blessings. We will work together," Patil told reporters here.

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Published 06 June 2024, 16:55 IST

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