Pune: The Congress Party is gearing up for forthcoming Lok Sabha and State Assembly polls and has started taking steps towards it. Recently, in a meeting held in Mumbai, Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) President Ashok Chavan consulted city party members about Pune Assembly and Lok Sabha seats. While former MLC Mohan Joshi said that he is interested in contesting the Lok Sabha seat from Pune if Vishwajeet Kadam contests the elections from Sangli, senior leaders in the party are keen on giving a chance to new faces.
For the forthcoming polls, the MPCC took a review of its 48 constituencies by consulting leaders and office-bearers. In Pune constituency, MPCC President Ashok Chavan and other members of the committee discussed the issue with city unit president Ramesh Bagwe, Member of Legislative Council (MLC) Sharad Ranpise, former MLC Ulhas Pawar, Mohan Joshi, former minister Balasaheb Shivarkar, Abhay Chhajed, Vishwajeet Kadam, Aba Bagul, Arvind Shinde and others.
There were deliberations that after the demise of his father and senior Congress leader Patangrao Kadam, Vishwajeet will contest from Sangli Lok Sabha constituency. Against that background, former MLC Joshi showed interest in contesting Lok Sabha election from Pune seat. But, he declared that it will be possible only if Vishwajeet refuses to contest.
While speaking to Sakal Times, Bagwe, said, “A week ago, the committee conducted a meeting of Pune city Congress leaders in Mumbai. They discussed with leaders and office-bearers about polls and their predictions, strengths and weaknesses of both Assembly and Lok Sabha constituencies. We told them to present a constituency-wise situation report.”
One of the senior leaders said, “Although, there are many leaders who showed interest in Lok Sabha seat like Mohan Joshi and Balasaheb Shivarkar in the meeting, Anant Gadgil is also one of the aspirants to contest the Lok Sabha seat. But the final decision lies with the committee.’’
In 2014 Lok Sabha polls, Kadam had contested from Pune but, he did not succeed and Congress lost their seat after a decade. Now, it is up to the committee to give ticket to Kadam again or give chance to a new face.