Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, senior Congress leader and Maharashtra Leader of Opposition has resigned from his post, latest media reports said on Tuesday. Interestingly, last week on March 13, his son Sujay Vikhe Patil had joined the BJP in presence of Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. After joining the BJP, Sujay Vikhe Patil had said, “I've taken this decision against my father’s wishes. I don’t know how much my parents will support this decision, but I'll try my best to make my family proud by working under the guidance of BJP. CM & other BJP MLAs were supportive & helped me take the decision.” It is not known yet whether Patil senior will join the BJP or not.
While addressing the media, CM Devendra Fadanavis said, " Sujay Vikhe Patil's name has been forwarded by state unit to Central Parliamentary board for Lok Sabha candidature and we are sure that the recommended name will be accepted by the Central Parliamentary board." After his son’s shocking exit from the Party, Vikhe Patil had met Congress chief Rahul Gandhi and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi on March 13 in New Delhi
The latest development will be a major blow to the Maharashtra Congress. Although, the News Nation opinion survey says the Congress-NCP alliance may improve its tally by bagging 15 seats. The BJP-Shiv Sena combine is likely to win 33 seats in Maharashtra. The figures could be a matter of concern for the BJP-Sena as it had bagged 41 of the 48 Lok Sabha seats in Maharashtra in 2014. The BJP won 23 while 18 seats by the Sena. The Congress had won only two seats, while the NCP did a tad better by winning four.
As far as vote-sharing is concerned, the saffron parties combine is expected to get 39 per cent of the votes, while the Congress-NCP may settle with 34 per cent of the total votes, the poll predicted.
Meanwhile, NCP chief Sharad Pawar has said that he will not contest next month's Lok Sabha election. The 78-year-old veteran politician said as two members of his family are going to contest the polls, "somebody had to step back."
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said the NCP chief's decision to pull out from poll fray was because he had "sensed the change in the air". "Since I have already won elections 14 times, I decided not to contest the poll (this time)," the Rajya Sabha member told reporters after holding a meeting with party leaders.
In Maharashtra, elections will held in four phases - on April 11, 18, 23 and 29.