Pimpri: Factionalism in the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) came to the fore even as Rahul Jadhav (36) of the BJP was elected the Pimpri Chinchwad Mayor here on Saturday. Jadhav polled 80 votes as against 33 votes by his rival, Vinod Nadhe, of the NCP. Jadhav is a supporter of Bhosari MLA Mahesh Landge.
Sachin Chinchwade (39), a supporter of Chinchwad MLA Laxman Jagtap, was elected the Deputy Mayor with 79 votes. He defeated Vinaya Tapkir of the NCP, who polled 32 votes.
BJP’s three members - Shatrughna Kate, Tushar Kamathe and Ravi Landge, were not present when the mayoral election took place. NCP’s three members and Shiv Sena’s two members were also absent.
Shiv Sena’s seven members abstained from voting in the mayoral poll.
While MLA Landge was present at the PCMC headquarters on Saturday, Chinchwad MLA Laxman Jagtap was conspicuous by his absence. This is the second time that Landge’s supporter has been elected to the mayoral post.
Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) corporator Sachin Chikhale also voted for Jadhav. Incidentally, new Mayor Jadhav was elected as MNS corporator in 2012.
Pune Mahanagar Parivahan Mahamandal Limited (PMPML) Chairperson Nayana Gunde was the presiding officer for the election.
The BJP has 77 members in the 128-member House.
Jadhav had arrived at the PCMC headquarters dressed as Mahatma Jyotiba Phule. Jadhav belongs to Mali caste, which is included in the Other Backward Class (OBC). The mayoral post is reserved for the OBC category.
Jadhav is the first male from the Mali community to be elected as PCMC mayor. Earlier, three women corporators belonging to this community were elected as mayors since the quota-based reservation for the post came into existence.
The mayoral polls were necessitated after Mayor Nitin Kalje and Deputy Mayor Shailja More resigned last week after serving for 16 months.