Pune: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has retained its sitting MLAs in four assembly seats in Pune while fielding four new faces in Kothrud, Kasba, Pune Cantonment and Shivajinagar constituencies. BJP State President Chandrakant Patil will contest his first ever assembly elections from Kothrud, along with city Mayor Mukta Tilak from Kasba, Siddharth Shirole from Shivajinagar and Sunil Kamble from Pune Cantonment constituencies. Three sitting corporators are contesting the polls for the first time.
BJP has released first list of 125 candidates, in which it announced the names of candidates for all eight constituencies in the city. The Kothrud constituency is considered a BJP stronghold. The Akhil Bhartiya Brahman Mahasangh has opposed Patil's candidature from Kothrud. There is a feeling among Kothrud residents that BJP has imported a non-brahmin candidate from outside the city.
Speaking to the media in Kolhapur, Patil said, “I have an association with Pune since 1982. Hence, Puneites do not consider me as an outsider.”
Three corporators in Assembly polls
BJP has repeated four sitting MLAs from Vadgaon Sheri (Jagdish Mulik), Hadapsar (Yogesh Tilekar), Khadakwasla (Bhimrao Tapkir) and Parvati (Madhuri Misal). However, it replaced the candidates in Kothrud, Shivajinagar, Pune Cantonment and Kasba. BJP has given a chance to three sitting corporators: Mayor Mukta Tilak (Kasba), Pune Cantonment (Sunil Kamble) and Shivajinagar (Siddharth Shirole).
After 25 years, Kasba has got a new face. Till date, BJP senior leader Girish Bapat was representing the constituency. He has been elected as an MP.
Dynasty in Shivajinagar, Pune Cantonment
Sitting corporator Siddharth Shirole, who is the son of former MP Anil Shirole, was elected as a corporator for the first time. He will contest the Assembly elections now. Sitting MLA Vijay Kale has not got the party ticket again. Siddharth Shirole is considered a member of the trusted young brigade of Fadnavis.
Corportor and Standing Committee Chairman Sunil Kamble is lucky. He is the brother of former minister of state Dilip Kamble. The latter’s performance was poor and the court had given directives to register a case against him for allegedly cheating a trader of Rs 1.92 crore by promising to get him two liquor shop licences. Therefore, BJP denied him a ticket and gave it instead to his brother Sunil Kamble. Pune Cantonment is a reserved constituency for Scheduled caste (SC).