Elections to 11 seats of Legislative Council likely to be unopposed

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 05 Jul 2018 09:44:36


Staff Reporter,

The elections to 11 seats of Maharashtra Legislative Council are likely to be unopposed. For, all major parties put together declared 11 names only for these seats. Still, for a crystal-clear picture, one will have to wait till evening of Thursday, which is the last day for filing nominations.
The elections assume a great significance because once the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) wins five seats -- which it is sure of winning -- it will become the single largest party in Legislative Council also.



The 78-member Upper House has 20 members each of BJP and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), 18 of Congress, 11 of Shiv Sena, one each of Janata Dal (United), Peasants and Workers Party (PWP), People’s Republican Party, and six Independents. The 11 candidates are to be elected to Legislative Council from among Members of Legislative Assembly.

On Wednesday, BJP declared its five candidates. They are Mahadev Jankar, sitting Animal Husbandry Minister and leader of BJP ally Rashtriya Samaj Paksha; Vijay alias Bhai Girkar, former Minister of State; Ram Patil Ratolikar, BJP District President of Nanded (Rural); Ramesh Narayan Patil, President of Koli Mahasangh from Thane, and Nilay Naik, former President of Yavatmal Zilla Parishad. Son of former Chief Minister Vasantrao Naik’s nephew Madhukar, Nilay parted ways with his uncle Manoharrao Naik and contested against him as NCP rebel in Legislative Assembly elections in 2009. In 2016, Nilay joined BJP.

Shiv Sena also declared names of Anil Parab and Manisha Kayande as its candidates. Parab, who is Shiv Sena group leader in the Upper House, is seeking re-election. Kayande is Shiv Sena spokesperson.

NCP announced the name of Babajani Durrani as its candidate this time. NCP, which currently has four members in the Upper House, will have only one member even if Durrani is elected unopposed.
At present, NCP has four members in the Legislative Council namely Sunil Tatkare, former State President of the party; Jaideo Gaikwad, Narendra Patil, and Amarsingh Pandit. NCP naming only Durrani as its candidate means it has denied ticket to Tatkare.

Already, Congress has announced candidature of Dr Wajahat Mirza from Yavatmal, and has repeated Sharad Ranpise, Congress group leader in the Upper House.
However, while doing so, Congress has denied ticket to Manikrao Thakre, Deputy Chairman of Legislative Council and former President of Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee, and Sanjay Dutt, high-profile MLC of the party.
At present, Congress has three members in the Upper House.

Apart from these four major parties declaring total 10 candidates, the eleventh candidate is likely to be Jayant Patil of PWP. He is also seeking re-election.

As per the schedule announced by Election Commission of India (ECI), the last date for filing of nomination papers is July 5. On July 6, the papers received will be scrutinised. If there are more than 11 candidates in the fray, those interested may withdraw their nominations by July 9. If there is still a contest for 11 seats, polling will be held on July 16, and results will be declared on the same day.
However, given the state of affairs just a day ahead of last date for filing of nomination papers, the election is likely to
be unopposed.