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Rediff.com  » News » After losing Baramati, Ajit Pawar's wife named for RS polls

After losing Baramati, Ajit Pawar's wife named for RS polls

Source: PTI
Last updated on: June 13, 2024 19:50 IST
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Maharashtra deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar's wife Sunetra on Thursday filed nomination papers as the Nationalist Congress Party candidate for the upcoming Rajya Sabha elections, days after she lost the Lok Sabha polls from Baramati.

IMAGE: Sunetra Pawar with her husband Ajit Pawar at the Shreemant Dagdusheth Halwai Ganpati temple, Pune. Photograph: ANI Photo

Incidentally, barring leaders from the NCP, no politician from the Ajit Pawar-led party's allies in the ruling Mahayuti -- the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Shiv Sena -- was present when Sunetra Pawar filed her nomination at the Vidhan Bhavan in south Mumbai.

 

Senior NCP leaders like Rajya Sabha member Praful Patel, Maharashtra cabinet minister Chhagan Bhujbal, party's state unit president and Lok Sabha MP-elect Sunil Tatkare and legislative assembly deputy speaker Narhari Zirwal were present at the filing of the nomination.

Bhujbal said though he was keen on contesting the Rajya Sabha polls, he was not upset with Sunetra Pawar's nomination, which he described as a "collective decision" of the party.

In the just-concluded Lok Sabha elections, Sunetra Pawar lost from the Baramati constituency in Pune district, where her sister-in-law Supriya Sule, the daughter of NCP-Sharad Pawar president Sharad Pawar, registered her fourth consecutive win.

“The NCP has decided to field Sunetra Pawar for the Rajya Sabha elections. Even I was keen on contesting the elections, but during a meeting on Wednesday evening, party leaders finalised her name,” said Bhujbal.

The Rajya Sabha secretariat has notified ten vacancies in the Upper House -- two each in Assam, Bihar and Maharashtra, and one each in Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Tripura.

These seats have fallen vacant after the sitting members got elected to the Lok Sabha in the just concluded parliamentary polls. Rajya Sabha MPs are elected by MLAs in states.

The Rajya Sabha vacancies arose in Maharashtra after two sitting members -- Piyush Goyal and Udayanraje Bhonsle (both from BJP) -- were elected to the Lok Sabha.

Asked if key posts were going to one family, Bhujbal maintained Ajit Pawar did not decide Sunetra Pawar's nomination.

“The decision to field Sunetra Pawar was taken by the party's core group. It was not decided by him (Ajit Pawar) alone. It was a collective decision,” Bhujbal asserted.

Asked whether he was disappointed over not being fielded in the Rajya Sabha polls, the Cabinet minister shot back, “Can you see it on my face? I have learnt to respect collective decision-making and have been doing it for the past 57 years. Be it the Shiv Sena or the NCP, decisions are taken after discussions with people and not as per one person's will.”

The 76-year-old politician has been in the Shiv Sena and the Congress and joined the NCP when Sharad Pawar formed the party in June 1999. The NCP suffered a split when Ajit Pawar and eight other MLAs, including Bhujbal, joined the Shiv Sena-BJP government in July 2023 as ministers.

Earlier, Bhujbal, a prominent OBC leader, was keen on contesting the Lok Sabha polls from Nashik, but NCP's alliance partner Shiv Sena led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde fielded its candidate from the constituency. The seat in North Maharashtra was won by former CM Uddhav Thackeray's Shiv Sena-Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray.

The NCP, the BJP and the Shiv Sena are constituents of the ruling Mahayuti alliance.

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India Votes 2024

India Votes 2024