MLC nominations: Aghadi plays it safe
Once bitten twice shy goes the saying. The Maha Vikas Aghadi is aware of Raj Bhavan-Secretariat strained ties. For its 12 MLC nominations through the Governor’s quota, the government sent its list to the advocate general to check the background of all candidates and to verify whether they all fit in the given criteria. Usually, the Governor appoints personalities from art, literature, drama, film and social work. The purpose is to ensure that the Governor is unable to reject the nominations. Else, it will be another set back to the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi government.
To be or not to be for BJP
The BJP is divided over the arrest of senior journalist Arnab Goswami. Leader of Opposition Devendra Fadnavis did not mention the names of Sharad Pawar and Uddhav Thackeray while condemning the arrest, but attacked Sonia and Rahul Gandhi who are a marginal player in the Maha Vikas Aghadi. The BJP fears that any support to Goswami will alienate the core Marathi voters on the line of Maharashtra versus outsiders. In the cases involving actors Sushant Singh Rajput and Kangna Ranaut, the BJP was at the forefront only to quietly backtrack. The Aghadi wants to harp on Marathi manoos agenda and espouse its support to Anvay Naik, who committed suicide due to alleged non-payment by Goswami. In such a situation, the BJP is unlikely to take up the episode strongly.
Pankaja’s not so subtle tweet
After Eknath Khadse, another BJP leader Pankaja Munde finds herself ‘overlooked’ by the BJP leadership. The party is trying to nurture an alternative Maratha face in BJP MLC Suresh Das as against Pankaja in Marathwada. Sugarcane labourers are traditional followers of the Munde family. But this year, the BJP asked Das to lead the protest of sugarcane cutters instead of Pankaja. That move has not gone well with Pankaja, who praised NCP chief Sharad Pawar in a tweet. The tweet has not gone well with the BJP.
Khadse’s North Maharashtra Mission
After joining the NCP, Eknath Khadse has started his mission in North Maharashtra. It was Khadse who had turned this region into a saffron belt. The veteran leader is known to take on his opponents directly. Old graft cases are used to target them. Those with a history of corruption are wary of him. Khadse has promised NCP boss Sharad Pawar that he will turn North Maharashtra an NCP bastion and will hold a mega rally at Sagar Ground in Jalgaon. The ground has never been fully packed in the past, but Khadse has promised to script history at the venue in January.
Our correspondent in Maharashtra firstname.lastname@example.org