Putting an end to speculation, the Shiv Sena on Tuesday announced that it would field late Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Chintaman Wanga's son Shrinivas for the Palghar Lok Sabha constituency bypoll.
The Congress is fielding Damodar Shingada while the Bahujan Vikas Aghadi is yet to declare their candidate for the bypoll.
"If the BJP was so keen on nominating one of the Vanga family members, they could have done so long back".
In the last Lok Sabha election, the BJP's Chintaman Vanga had bagged 5,33,201 votes, thanks to the Narendra Modi wave that had helped the party bag 53.72 per cent votes, while BVA's candidate was on the second place with 2,93,681 votes. In fact, even the Shiv Sena leadership was aware of the BJP's decision.
The Sena had last week inducted Shriniwas and other members of the Wanga family into the party after they accused the BJP of ignoring the late MP's legacy as well as his kin.
Uddhav Thackeray is coming Nagpur to know the opinion of Shiv Sena leaders of Vidarbha. "The seat is with the BJP and it should remain with us", said Mr. Fadnavis.
"Palghar is a BJP seat; the party had won the Lok Sabha poll (there) on several occasions". He said people like Wanga ensured the growth of the party in this tribal belt, and a BJP victory would be a true tribute to him. "The BJP has always had a high regard for Chintaman Wanga".
Slamming the BJP for poaching Gavit from his party's fold, the State Congress chief charged that the BJP had misused money and its office to wean away his party's tribal leader. "He will work for the development of the district", he said. "Gavit has joined the BJP just now, and we have nominated him".
The bypolls in Palghar are being seen as a litmus test for the BJP and CM Devendra Fadnavis ahead of the general election 2019.
Terming Gavit's exit as a good riddance, Chavan said that anyway he wouldn't have allotted the ticket to contest the bypoll.
Shiv Sena spokesperson Manisha Kayande said today that party chief Uddhav Thackeray has made a decision to nominate Shrinivas Wanga for the bypoll. "After the clearance, Shingda will file his nomination papers on May 10", he said. The family however opted to stay with the Sena, further upsetting the BJP.
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