midst Shah and CM Fadnavis’ visit to Latur, the local BJP is rattled over the rumoured news of seat selling. The BJP workers are divided into two groups — one believes that the news is true and the other considers the rumour is set by the most inefficient and non-performing cadres to seek the attention of the high commands. However, none of them is ready to settle in for the larger perspectives of the party.
As we all know, Maharashtra will vote for Lok Sabha elections in three phases. The polling dates are April 10, 17, and 24. The time is just flying; so, the party high commands are making their trips to the State with the agenda of reaching to the masses. After Shah, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will blow election bugle from Latur to feel the pulse of people and the party workers for the crucial 2019 Lok Sabha polls. In such a climacteric moment, the nuisance created by its own worker, should not impact the party’s prospects. The divide in BJP on the local level is not good for the party because the leaders and the cadres should understand the fact that it’s not easy for the party to keep everyone happy all the time; one has to gain and the other one has to take that decision of the party in a positive note. By spreading the gossips on groups and media, the member who is creating a bad impression of BJP, won’t be spared and respected in future.
There are seven candidates and some of them are Sudhakar Bhalerao, Dr. Anil Kamble, Sudhakar Singheria, Dr. Sunil Gaikwad, and Sanjay Deorole; one of them have the possibility of getting that seat but that does not mean that the others, who could not make it, should engage in gossipmongering against BJP. Right now, the top contenders in the race are Sudhakar Bhalerao, Dr. Anil Kamble, Sanjay Deorole, and Dr. Sunil Gaikwad. These all four candidates have their share of achievements and strength here. Who will get the ticket solely depends on the BJP heads and that only time will declare. However, at this moment, the Shah-Devendra meet assumes significance as the BJP would be using the social media platforms to “aggressively” counter the Opposition’s propaganda against it. Shah met all the intellectuals and the party workers to take feedback from Lok Sabha in-charges. For 2019, BJP does not want to leave any stone unturned; as in 2014, the region had a smooth mandate by a huge margin. The irony is that the leaders of the party are aggressively using the same platform to defame its own party.
Well, this is one side of the story! If you look at the other side, BJP has tried to cover up the entire saga putting the blame on the news media and victimising some of its workers. Although the fact is that BJP is known for horse-trading and bargaining the seats for funds. That is the reason BJP has the richest members than the meritorious ones.
Following the preparations for the Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabha elections, BJP’s National President Amit Shah met dozens of ministers. Accordingly, this campaign has been preparing for the last eight days and the whole city looked saffron. Dr. Sunil Gaikwad, Dattatray Gunderao Bansode, Deepak Arvind Kamble, Deepratna Prabhakarrao Nilangekar, Sudhir Shripatrao Shinde were the stalwarts of the day. This was Amit Shah’s first-time visit to Latur. Shah was kept in a private three-star hotel; there was a special menu of local cuisine for his lunch and he was available to all the office bearers for the meeting. In a short time, Shah made his Shahi (lavish) visit and that was worth noticing. He could motivate the many and mend the maximum. Shah is known for his skills of convincing or you may say imposing. Overall, the rumours did not make much difference in his agenda, but he got cautioned about the vendetta. Though the meeting with the core group was very much prospective while booth-level workers were very much enthusiastic; they were preparing from the last 10 days for this meeting. There were party workers from Latur, Osmanabad, Hingoli, and Nanded districts on the preceding upcoming Lok Sabha elections. At the evening at Dayanand hall, Amit Shah and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis interacted directly with the dignitaries from all the sectors of the industries, in a separate meeting on who can play a key role in fund fetching. The campaign was organised in the district as per the Lok Sabha constituency and the Sixth Vidhan Sabha constituency, and the party has taken the initiative to win all the constituencies of the Congress. Latur was a Congress bastion which was taken over by BJP in 2014.
On the other hand, Congress believes that the BJP’s growing dominance in their stronghold Latur is a “temporary phase”. People of Latur will now judge BJP’s performance as it has won the Zilla Parishad (ZP) for the first time in 30 years and the Municipal Corporation after 10 years. Vilasrao Deshmukh too had lost an Assembly election from Latur once. However, he was elected again later. Recently, BJP has lost four crucial states. Congress is making its comeback; at such juncture, such rift in BJP can dent the party panoramas. If you look at the Municipal level, BJP doesn’t have its own candidates. Congress’s presence on root level cannot be ignored. Amit Deshmukh is an MLA from Latur and the other brother, Riteish, is a Bollywood actor. He will ensure that the Congress gets the highest number of seats in Latur district. Riteish Deshmukh, who has made his presence felt through his acting in several mainstream Bollywood movies, is now gearing up to add another feather to his cap. The actor is all set to venture into full-time politics by campaigning for the 2019 Lok Sabha general election’s reserved candidate of Congress. He has joined the Congress party and will be contesting the elections on its ticket. For the uninitiated, Riteish’s father, late Vilasrao Deshmukh was the Chief Minister of Maharashtra. Off late, the actor had started retweeting a lot of tweets from the official handle of Congress party President Rahul Gandhi. Riteish, who comes from a political family, is not new to the rigmarole of the elections and recently, he even helped his younger brother Dhiraj Deshmukh in his election campaign for Latur Legislative Council. Indian National Congress is aiming to project Riteish as the party’s campaign candidate for the next elections since he is highly popular in Maharashtra as an actor as well as the son of Vilasrao Deshmukh.
This time, BJP Vs Deshmukh of Congress would be an interesting battle altogether. Let’s see who makes it to the power corridors.