Who is really the opposition & who is in the ruling party!

Rohit Chandavarkar
Monday, 17 June 2019

Many within the BJP are now wondering whether so many defectors from the Congress and NCP need to be taken into the ruling party. After all the party in alliance with the Shiv Sena has won 41 out of 48 seats in the recently concluded Lok Sabha polls.

In a peculiar post-Lok Sabha poll and pre-assembly poll season, Maharashtra has been witnessing some weird political incidents which are unprecedented and have created waves in the political sphere. Two senior political leaders from both sides of the political divide commented on it citing how this was now almost looking like a circus!

On Sunday senior BJP leader who was a minister in the government earlier Eknath Khadse said the BJP is now looking very desperate as it has started importing leaders from its main rival, the Congress as well as the NCP randomly with the strategy to corner the opposition in the upcoming assembly polls. Secondly former deputy chief minister and NCP leader Ajit Pawar said in the assembly in a lighter vain that he was worried that the opposition will run out of leaders in the house as the BJP was on –what he called was an “engineered defection spree”.

All these comments were made on the backdrop of one of the senior most leaders of the Congress party Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil joining the BJP and taking oath on Sunday as a cabinet minister in the BJP-Shiv Sena government. The other big name among those sworn in on Sunday was that of Jayadatta Kshirsagar who has a known and established face of the NCP from Marathwada, now joining the cabinet as a Shiv Sena member. Maharashtra suddenly sees a wave of defections ahead of the upcoming assembly polls and the numbers are unprecedented.

Many within the BJP are now wondering whether so many defectors from the Congress and NCP need to be taken into the ruling party. After all the party in alliance with the Shiv Sena has won 41 out of 48 seats in the recently concluded Lok Sabha polls. Insiders and specially those who come with RSS lineage believe that the genuine activists who have worked hard for decades when the BJP was in the opposition, is now being ignored because of those who have come from Congress or NCP. In western Maharashtra’s Ahmednagar district Radhkrishna Vikhe Patil’s son Sujay was given a BJP Lok Sabha ticket by denying that ticket to long time BJP loyalist leader Dilip Gandhi. In Solapur district similar opportunities were given to the Mohite Patil family members ignoring the loyal activists who have been in the party for decades. In Pimpri Chinchwad Municipal corporation in the past three years scores of NCP leaders have crossed over to the BJP. “The party has side lined old loyal leaders and is now running on the basis of imported leaders”, alleges Eknath Khadse.

From giving former Congressman Narayan Rane a Rajya Sabha seat to making former Congressman Vikhe-Patil a cabinet minister in the state, the BJP has given clear signals about what the party wants to do. For the time being the party’s focus in the state is assembly elections slated for October 2019 and the party seems to be using every trick in the book to ensure a repeat of Lok Sabha elections results there.

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