Mukesh Ambani, Uday Kotak endorse Milind Deora 

In a development that has raised several eyebrows, Reliance Industries Ltd chairman Mukesh Ambani has endorsed the candidature of Congress leader Milind Deora for Mumbai South.

In the prestigious Mumbai South seat, Deora, who is the president of Mumbai Regional Congress Committee (MRCC), is pitted against sitting MP Arvind Sawant of the Shiv Sena.

In a video message shared by Deora on his Twitter page, Ambani says: "Milind is the man for South Mumbai... Milind has in-depth knowledge of social, economic and cultural eco-system of the South Bombay constituency."

This is for the first time that India's richest man has backed the candidature of a politician.

Banker Uday Kotak, in the same video, says Deora is "truly representing the Mumbai connection".

The support of Ambani to Deora has sparked off a controversy and trended on social media.

"From small shopkeepers to large industrialists — for everyone, South Mumbai means business. We need to bring businesses back to Mumbai and make job creation for our youth a top priority. #MumbaiKaConnection," tweeted Deora, who was a junior minister in the Dr Manmohan Singh government.

The development comes at a time when campaign has reached the crescendo in Mumbai Metropolitan Region that has 10 seats and goes to polls on 29 April during the fourth phase.

It is noteworthy that the support comes at a time when Congress president Rahul Gandhi is targeting Ambani's younger brother and industrialist Anil Ambani over the Rafale fighter jet deal.

Milind's father Murli Deora, who was the Petroleum & Natural Gas minister in the Congress-led UPA government, was the Mumbai Congress chief for over two decades and was a loyalist of the Gandhi family as well as a personal friend of late Dhirubhai Ambani.

 

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