The opposition Congress in Maharashtra has agreed to allot the Sangli Lok Sabha seat to its ally Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana (SSS). Congress leader Satej Patil said on Sunday that Vishal Patil, younger brother of former party MP Pratik Patil, will be fielded as the SSS candidate from Sangli.
Pratik Patil and Vishal Patil are grandsons of former Maharashtra chief minister late Vasantdada Patil. The Congress and NCP earlier decided to give one seat each from their respective quotas to SSS, led by MP Raju Shetti.
Accordingly, Hathkanangale was given from the NCP's quota and Sangli from the Congress' quota.
Shetti will contest the next month's Lok Sabha election from Hathkanangale.
Pratik Patil, a former Union minister, resigned from the Congress last week in protest against the Sangli seat being given to the SSS, a party source said.
He was being pressurised by a section of the BJP to contest as an Independent against sitting BJP MP Sanjay Kaka Patil, the source alleged.
He was defeated by Sanjay Kaka Patil in the 2014 general elections. It was the first defeat of the Congress in the constituency since 1962.
While quitting the Congress last week, Pratik Patil made it clear he would neither contest the Lok Sabha election nor join the BJP.
On Saturday, the NCP gave Raver Lok Sabha seat in the state from its quota to the Congress. Now, the Congress will contest total 25 seats, NCP-19 and SSS-2.
Independent MLA Ravi Rana's local outfit Yuva Swabhiman Party will contest the Amravati seat (from NCP quota) while the Bahujan Vikas Aghadi led by Hitendra Thakur will field its candidate in Palghar seat (from Congress' quota).
Lok Sabha elections to total 48 seats in Maharashtra will be held in four phases on April 11, 18, 23 and 29 and the results will be declared on May 23.