Pimpri: A keenly contested tussle has begun between supporters of the ruling BJP MLAs Mahesh Landge and Laxman Jagtap, following resignations by Pimpri Chinchwad Mayor Nitin Kalje and Deputy Mayor Shailaja More here on Tuesday.
The strong contenders for the mayor’s post are Shatrughna Kate, a Jagtap supporter, and Rahul Jadhav, a Landge supporter. Both the MLAs are expected to lobby strongly for the election of their own supporters.
The BJP State high command will finalise names of the candidates for the vacant posts at a meeting to be held in Mumbai on Friday.
Outgoing mayor Kalje belongs to MLA Landge group. The others also in the race for the mayor’s posts include Namdeo Dake, Suresh Bhoir and Santosh Londhe.
The mayoral post is reserved for the Other Backward Class candidates. Meanwhile, Nationalist Congress Party’s Kailas Kunjir has demanded that the caste verification committee should immediately conduct verification of the caste certificate of Kate who is aspiring for the mayor’s post.
Kalje and More had submitted their resignations to Municipal Commissioner Shravan Hardikar on Tuesday, after the visit of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to the city on Monday. Both had completed more than 15-month period and their resignations were sought to provide opportunities to other aspiring corporators of the ruling party. In the
128-member House, the BJP has 77 seats.
The elections to the vacant posts will be held as per the schedule to be announced by the divisional commissioner.
The Leader of the House, Eknath Pawar, is also expected to resign from his post after the elections of new mayor and deputy mayor.