NCP's Ajit Pawar sounds Assembly poll bugle in Maharashtra

The NCP would hold a mega rally and stage a massive show of strength on Sunday in Baramati in the run up to the Vidhan Sabha polls in Maharashtra.
Last Updated : 09 July 2024, 08:52 IST

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Mumbai: Ahead of the massive show of strength in Baramati, Ajit Pawar on Tuesday sounded the bugle of the Nationalist Congress Party’s (NCP) campaign for the ensuing Vidhan Sabha polls when he along with his core team visited the Siddhivinayak Temple in Mumbai and offered prayers to Lord Ganesh. 

Ajit Pawar, the deputy chief minister and NCP president was accompanied by working president Praful Patel, state unit president Sunil Tatkare and legislators of the 25-year-old political outfit. 

“It is a good start to seek blessings of the deity to commence the campaign for the forthcoming state assembly elections, to strengthen the party and go to the people with the agenda of development,” said Ajit Pawar, who is a five-time deputy chief minister and ex-leader of the opposition in the Assembly. 

Ajit Pawar and his entourage travelled in a bus to the Siddhivinayak Temple from the NCP office located near Mantralaya and Vidhan Bhavan complex.

The NCP would hold a mega rally and stage a massive show of strength on Sunday in Baramati in the run up to the Vidhan Sabha polls in Maharashtra.

The rally is being held in the backdrop of the debacle in the recently-concluded Lok Sabha polls

Ajit Pawar, who is the NCP president and deputy chief minister alongside BJP’s Devendra Fadnavis in the Maha Yuti (NDA) government led by chief minister Eknath Shinde, would take forward the plans, programmes and policies of the alliance government. 

The 14 July event has been titled Jan Samman Rally.  “On this occasion, the leadership would interact with party workers and the future plans of the party will be discussed,” state NCP president Sunil Tatkare said.

In the Lok Sabha polls, of the 48 seats the NCP was allotted five seats, of which four were contested by the party, while one was given to Mahadev Jankar of Rashtriya Samaj Paksha. 

The NCP managed to win just one seat - the Raigad seat, which is represented by Tatkare. 

Ajit Pawar fielded his wife Sunetra Pawar from Baramati, however, she was defeated by Supriya Sule, the daughter of Sharad Pawar - who won the elections for fourth term. 

In June-July, 2023, Ajit Pawar led a banner of revolt against Sharad Pawar, his uncle and mentor, and joined the BJP camp and later successfully claimed the NCP and its iconic clock symbol. On the other hand, Sharad Pawar was allotted the party name as NCP (Sharadchandra Pawar) and given the man-blowing-turah symbol.

The NCP (SP) contested 10 seats and won eight - one of the best success rates for the party. 

After the Baramati defeat, Sunetra Pawar was sent to the Rajya Sabha.

The Baramati show of strength is happening at a time when there is a tussle between the Marathas and OBCs over reservation issues.

Later this week, the biennial elections for 11 seats of Maharashtra Legislative Council would be held. 

The NCP has fielded two candidates - and hopes to get help from allies BJP and Shiv Sena for the second candidate. 

The OBC resistance to Marathas getting reservation as Kunbis under OBC bracket, is being spearheaded by state food, civil supplies and consumer protection minister Chhagan Bhujbal, who is also the president of All India Mahatma Phule Samata Parishad. 

In the Vidhan Sabha polls, Ajit Pawar does not want to take any chance as the NCP (SP) is expected to field Sharad Pawar's grand nephew Yugendra Pawar.

Ajit Pawar is a seven-time MLA from Baramati. 

Sharad Pawar’s other grand-nephew Rohit Pawar is an MLA from Karjat-Jamkhed in Ahmednagar district. 

Published 09 July 2024, 08:52 IST

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