Shiv Sena to not contest Palus-Kadegaon bypoll

first_imgPune: Shiv Sena has decided to not field a candidate for the bypoll to the Palus-Kadegaon Assembly seat in Sangli district, which fell empty after the death of Congress leader Patangrao Kadam in March.On Thursday, Patangrao’s son, Youth Congress president Vishwajeet Kadam, had a telephonic conversation with Sena president Uddhav Thackeray who assured him that the party would not field a candidate for the seat out of respect for his late father, sources close to the Congress leader said.BJP fields DeshmukhAfter Patangrao’s death in March, it was expected that the major political parties would not field candidates against Vishwajeet Kadam, who hopes to get elected unopposed. The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has already said it would not put forward anybody for the seat. However, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) announced on Wednesday that it would field Sangramsinh Deshmukh, son of late BJP legislator Sampatrao Deshmukh, for the seat — two days after Mr. Kadam filed his nomination. Sangramsinh’s cousin Prithviraj Deshmukh is BJP’s Sangli district chief. Sangramsinh heads the Zilla Parishad and has interests in the Sangli District Cooperative Bank.Bitter legacyThe Palus-Kadegaon seat has a bitter history. In 1997, following Sampatrao Deshmukh’s death, Patangrao had decided to contest the election instead of letting a relative of the BJP MLA be elected unopposed. This rankled with the Deshmukhs. In the 2009 Assembly poll, Patangrao managed to wrest the seat from Prithviraj, and again defeated him in the 2014 election, despite the BJP coming to power in the State.The BJP’s decision to field Sangramsinh against Mr. Kadam is viewed as ‘payback’ by a section of BJP leaders and workers in Sangli. However, sources say the BJP might be willing to withdraw their candidate if the Congress doesn’t field anyone for the Palghar Lok Sabha bypoll.The Kalus-Padegaon Assembly by-election, along with the Palghar and Bhandara-Gondia Lok Sabha bypolls, is to be held on May 28, with counting of votes on May 31.last_img

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