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Cong denies ticket to 2 sitting MLAs, brings in veterans

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congress logoNagpur: Two sitting Congress MLAs from Nagpur-South and Gadchiroli have not been given tickets by the party, which has brought in veterans in Vidarbha region for the October 15 Maharashtra Assembly polls.

Two-term MLA Dinanath Padole from Nagpur-South and Dr Namdeo Usendi from Gadchiroli, who won for the first time in 2009 and unsuccessfully contested Lok Sabha polls held earlier this year from Gadchiroli seat, have been replaced.

As per the party list released late last night by All India Congress Committee (AICC), party veterans Satish

Chaturvedi and Anees Ahmad, both former state Cabinet ministers who had lost 2009 Assembly polls, have been given another chance. Chaturvedi, a five-term MLA from Nagpur-East and former state textile minister, has been shifted to Nagpur-South, while Ahmad, the former dairy development minister who left Nagpur-Central in 2009 to Nagpur-West and subsequently lost, has returned to Nagpur-Central, a Muslim dominated seat.

At Gadchiroli, the party has brought in Sauguna Pentaram Talandi to replace sitting MLA Usendi.

Congress has decided to field three young candidates, including two new faces – Abhijit Wanjari and Praful Guddhe Patil – from Nagpur-East and Nagpur-South West respectively, while former Mayor Vikas Thakre, who lost in 2009 from Nagpur-South West, has been shifted to Nagpur-West.

Abhijit’s father Govindrao Wanjari was elected twice from Nagpur-South. However, he had died of heart attack in Mumbai before he was sworn-in as MLA for the second time in 2004.

Nagpur-South West candidate Praful is the son of former Minister of State Vinod Guddhe Patil, who was was the city BJP president and had unsuccessfully contested Lok Sabha elections (on BJP ticket) in 1999 against Vilas Muttemwar. Vinod had later joined Congress.

Three-time MLA and Dalit leader Dr Nitin Raut, who is presently state Employment Guarantee Scheme Minister, has been retained from Nagpur-North (reserved) constituency.

Minister of State for Water Resources Ranjit Kamble has also been retained from Deoli seat in Wardha district.

Other prominent Congress leaders who have been given tickets include former Minister of State for Energy Vijay Wadettiwar from Bramhapuri, and former Minister of State for Energy Sunil Kedar (Saoner), who is facing charges in the Rs 156 crore alleged irregularities in Nagpur District Co-Op Bank (NDCCB).

Former Union Minister for Heavy Industries Subodh Mohite, who left the Shiv Sena and joined Congress and lost Lok Sabha poll, has been given ticket from Ramtek.

Former MSMC chairman Avinash Warjurkar, Deputy Speaker Vasant Purke (Ralegaon, Yavatmal) and Yashomati Thakur (Teosa, Amravati) also figure among the candidates.

State Social Justice Minister Shivajirao Moghe (Kelapur, Yavatmal) and Raosaheb Shekhawat (Amravati) are keeping their fingers crossed as both the constituencies do not figure in the first list of candidates announced.

Nearly 36 names from Vidarbha region, which has 62 constituencies, figure in the released list.


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