LokSabha 2019: Pune ticket goes to Congress loyalist Joshi

ST CORRESPONDENT
Wednesday, 3 April 2019

The Congress finally named party loyalist Mohan Joshi as its Pune Lok Sabha election candidate late on Monday. As the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate Girish Bapat filed his nominations for the Pune Lok Sabha seat, the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) were celebrating Joshi’s candidature at the Congress Bhavan. 

Pune: The Congress finally named party loyalist Mohan Joshi as its Pune Lok Sabha election candidate late on Monday. As the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate Girish Bapat filed his nominations for the Pune Lok Sabha seat, the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) were celebrating Joshi’s candidature at the Congress Bhavan. 

The Congress did not consider Sambhaji Brigade State President Pravin Gaikwad for the ticket, who had recently joined the party. Congress loyalists had objected to Gaikwad as the candidate from Pune. 

Congress leaders expressed unhappiness and registered their opposition with the party high command. During the final round of talks, Congress senior corporator Arvind Shinde and Mohan Joshi were being considered. However, the party high command preferred Joshi, who is experienced and had also contested the Lok Sabha polls against BJP candidate Pradeep Rawat in 1999 from Pune. Rawat had defeated Joshi.
 
Almost after 20 years, the Congress has again given a chance to Joshi. He is one of the senior members of the city Congress unit. Now, he will take on BJP’s Bapat, who had also contested the Pune Lok Sabha seat in 1996.

Party workers welcomed Joshi at Congress Bhavan on Tuesday afternoon. They were happy that the party chose a loyalist, who has been working since 1972 for the party. He was also the president of Maharashtra Youth Congress in 1986. 

During a combined meeting of Congress-NCP party workers, Joshi thanked party President Rahul Gandhi for his candidature.

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