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Maharashtra MLC Elections: Congress’ true test, whose commander will Uddhav Thackeray and Sharad Pawar support?

Nita Yadav

By Nita Yadav

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Maharashtra MLC Election

The political chessboard for the Maharashtra Assembly elections has begun through the Legislative Council. After the setback in the Lok Sabha elections, the BJP has tried to mend the political equation by fielding OBC faces in the Legislative Council. The contest has become interesting as a total of 14 candidates are contesting for 11 Legislative Council seats in the state. Nine candidates from the BJP-led NDA alliance are trying their luck, while three candidates are in the fray from the Congress-led Bharat Alliance.

NDA seems to be losing all seats based on MLAs. Similarly, the Congress is considered certain to win one of its seats, but the real challenge lies with Uddhav Thackeray and Sharad Pawar. Uddhav and Sharad have fielded their closest leaders in the MLC elections. Based on their incumbent MLAs, a win for Uddhav Thackeray’s close and Sharad Pawar’s commander is not in sight. Thus the victory of both the parties rests on the Congress. In such a situation, it will be seen now, whose support Congress is seen in the Legislative Council elections?

Which candidate belongs to which party in MLC election?

Nine candidates of the BJP-led NDA are trying their luck in the Maharashtra Legislative Council elections. Pankaja Munde in MLC election from BJP, Dr. Parinay Phuke, Amit Borkhe, Yogesh Tillekar and Sadabhau Khot are in the field. Sadabhai is the president of the Rait Kranti Party in Maharashtra’s NDA and belongs to the Maratha community, but the BJP has fielded him as the MLC candidate on its ticket.

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The Eknath Shinde-led Shiv Sena has now fielded a Legislative Council candidate after rejecting former MP Bhavna Gawli’s Lok Sabha ticket. Similarly, Eknath Shinde has also given ticket to send Kripal Tumane to Legislative Council from Shiv Sena. Ajit Pawar-led NCP has fielded Shivajirao Garje and Rajesh Whitaker as MLC candidates.

At the same time, on behalf of the Congress-led Bharat Gathbandhan, the Congress has again fielded sitting Legislative Council member Pragya Satav in the MLC election. Along with this, Uddhav Thackeray has decided to send his personal secretary Milind Narvekar to the Legislative Council on behalf of his party Shiv Sena (UBT). Sharad Pawar’s NCP has fielded Jayant Patil in the MLC elections.

Who will win in how many seats?

In elections to 11 MLC seats in Maharashtra, BJP has decided to support five, Shinde’s Shiv Sena and NCP’s Ajit Pawar faction won two each, Congress one, Uddhav Thackeray’s Shiv Sena one and Sharad Pawar’s NCP. Has decided to support Jayant Patil. The Maharashtra Legislative Assembly has a total of 288 members, but currently has 274 MLAs. In this sense, to win an MLC seat, the support of at least 23 MLAs on a first preference basis is required.

BJP has 103 MLAs, its ally Ajit Pawar’s NCP has 40 MLAs and Shinde’s Shiv Sena has 38 MLAs. Apart from this, NDA has the support of 203 MLAs including other NDA allies and independent MLAs. On this basis, if the ruling party gathers the support of four more MLAs, the victory of all its nine MLC candidates will be assured.

At the same time, the India Alliance has the support of only 71 MLAs, of which 37 are Congress MLAs. Apart from this, Uddhav Thackeray’s Shiv Sena has 16 MLAs and Sharad Pawar’s NCP has 12 MLAs. It has the support of 2 SP MLAs, two CPI(M) MLAs and three additional MLAs. India can win all three seats depending on the number of MLAs in the alliance, but it will have to keep MLAs from other parties on board and also retain the confidence of Congress MLAs.

Role of Congress as Kingmaker

Congress is the largest party in the Bharat Alliance. Based on the number of Congress MLAs present, Pragya Satav’s victory is considered certain. After Pragya Satav gets the votes of 23 Congress MLAs, she will have 14 additional votes left. Sharad Pawar currently has the support of 12 MLAs, due to which he will need 11 additional votes for his candidate to win, as 23 votes are required. Similarly, Uddhav Thackeray’s Shiv Sena has 16 MLAs. In this regard, Shiv Sena candidate Milind Narvekar needs the votes of 7 additional MLAs after the party’s 16 MLAs.

Congress is responsible for the victory of both Sharad Pawar’s Jayant Patil and Uddhav Thackeray’s Milind Narvekar. Whoever votes in favor of the additional 14 Congress MLAs will win. If Narvekar is to ensure his victory, he needs to collect 8 votes while Sharad Pawar’s Jayant Patil needs 11 votes for his victory. In such a situation, it remains to be seen whether Sharad Pawar’s candidate gets additional Congress votes or Uddhav Thackeray.

NDA vs India coalition war

If there is a match between NDA vs India in the Maharashtra Legislative Council elections then the match will be interesting. Even after the support of independent MLAs NDA needs 4 votes, if the Bharatiya Janata Party remains united and there is a fair distribution of votes apart from the Congress, all three seats can go to its account. However, the India Alliance will have to secure the support of MLAs from the Congress, Uddhav Thackeray and Sharad Pawar camps, as well as two MLAs each from SP and Owaisi.

After the results of the Lok Sabha elections, there is talk in the political circles of Maharashtra that Eknath Shinde and Ajit Pawar’s party MLAs are in touch with Sharad Pawar and Uddhav Thackeray. Cross voting took place in the 2022 Legislative Council elections, due to which the Maha Vikas Aghadi suffered a blow. Because of this, the Indian coalition will have to maintain the confidence of its supporting legislators, but one thing is clear that the politics of manipulation will intensify. In such a situation, it will be interesting to see if Uddhav Thackeray and Sharad Pawar can match the defeat they had two years ago?

Nita Yadav

Nita Yadav

I am Nita Yadav, specializing in writing about politics and breaking national news. My focus is on delivering insightful and timely perspectives on these crucial topics, aiming to inform and engage my readers effectively.

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